My Favorite Bear Books, Part 2

In Part 1 yesterday, I talked about half of these wonderful bear books.  Here is the second half:

Blueberries For Sal, by Robert McCloskey

The year was 1948.  Sal and her mother go blueberry picking.  On the other side of the hill, a bear cub and his mother also go searching for blueberries.  Sal and the bear cub are much the same, gobbling up blueberries and looking for adventure.  When each crosses over to the other side of the hill, Sal is following mama bear, and the cub is following Sal’s mama.  The story is captivating for children.

Teddy Bears Cure a Cold, by Susanna Gretz and Alison Sage

The family of five bears help take care of William when he gets the flu.  The bears know just what to do, from manning the temperature chart, to feeding William, to giving him a bell to ring if he needs anything.  William begins to recover and constantly rings the bell while the bears are making something special.  The text is witty and depicts the bears every feeling from worry to annoyance.  I love the illustrations.  They capture it all.  Children can relate to  becoming sick and recovering.  They love this book.

Mother Bruce, by Ryan T. Higgins

This book is hilarious.  Children laugh hard.  Adults laugh harder.  Bruce is a grumpy old bear who is trying to cook goose eggs.  Unfortunately for him, the eggs hatch, and the goslings immediately “know” Bruce is their mama.  Despite his many efforts to send the goslings on their way and prove he is not their mother, he is unsuccessful.  The trials and tribulations Bruce goes through rate a 10 on the laugh-o-meter.

Every Autumn Comes the Bear, by Jim Arnosky

The glorious illustrations pull in the reader to the ritual of the bear’s  hibernation.  From autumn through winter, the changes of the season are perfectly illustrated, along with a simple, predictable, and well written text.  I love this book!

Honey, by David Stein

Bear wakes up from hibernation and is ready to find honey.  It is not yet summer, so bear learns the hard way about searching for honey too early, sticking his nose into a tree of busy working bees.  He finds many delightful adventures while waiting for honey season.  When he finally hears the buzz of bees, he knows it’s time for honey.  The book reflects on the second season after hibernation for the bear, just as good as he remembered.

Happy reading.  Bears are the best.


About Jennie

I have been teaching preschool for over thirty years. This is my passion. I believe that children have a voice, and that is the catalyst to enhance or even change the learning experience. Emergent curriculum opens young minds. It's the little things that happen in the classroom that are most important and exciting. That's what I write about. I am highlighted in the the new edition of Jim Trelease's bestselling book, "The Read-Aloud Handbook" because of my reading to children. My class has designed quilts that hang as permanent displays at both the National Liberty Museum in Philadelphia, and the Fisher House at the Boston VA Hospital.
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62 Responses to My Favorite Bear Books, Part 2

  1. beth says:

    aw, blueberries for sal –

  2. Blueberries for Sal!!! I remember how excited my mother was to read me that book. She loved it so, and she knew I would, too.

  3. They are all new to me The covers are so funny too. I really do not understand, why we got not offered such books to read. What language skills we had won too. Michael

  4. beetleypete says:

    I have actuality seen one of these, ‘Mother Bruce’. It’s very good indeed.
    What about Winnie The Pooh, Jennie? I love the characters in Milne’s stories.
    Best wishes, Pete.

  5. quiall says:

    Bears truly are the best!

  6. Love your favorites, Jennie. A new favorite of mine is Maybe a Bear Ate It. Probably because I’ve had so many delightful experiences with kids and that book. ☺️

  7. Darlene says:

    Mother Bruce is hilarious. I just love it! All bear books are good. I also love Rupert Bear and Paddington Bear and of course the most famous bear of all, Winnie the Pooh! I know, these are teddy bears and not real live bears. I still have my old teddy bears.

  8. Elizabeth says:

    I must second the inclusion of Paddington. My daughter loved him.

  9. Yesterday, I wondered if you would include Blueberries for Sal. It’s old and the pictures aren’t as pretty as in modern books, but it’s a great story. Happy to see it here.

    • Jennie says:

      It is a great story, Anneli. I know it’s old and pictures aren’t as modern…but the children love the book. Aren’t they the greatest critics? Thank you!

      • I was surprised to find that out when I read “Little Pear” to my grade 1-2 split. They loved the story and once in a while they’d say, “Can we see the pictures?” and I would show them the tiny pen and ink drawing in the book and say, “Guess you’ll have to make up your own pictures in your head.” They gladly did, and they couldn’t wait for the next chapter whenever I put the book down. So some of the oldies are still goodies,

      • Jennie says:

        That’s what I tell my preschoolers when I shatter read! Yes, some of the oldies are definitely goodies. Thanks, Anneli. 🙂

  10. Great bears, Jennie. Thanks.

  11. Dan Antion says:

    “Bears are the best.” I think that sums it up, Jennie.

  12. More gems to share… Perfect for family read-alouds this weekend! 🙂 xo

  13. srbottch says:

    Wow, I remember ‘Blueberries for Sal’. Great post, Jennie!

  14. I never realized there were so many bear books, Jennie! (But then I’ve never known anything about children’s books.) You’ve made all of these sound adorable! Hugs on the wing!

  15. Thank you for sharing these great bear books Jennie. I remember winning “The Teddy Bear’s Picnic” at primary school. I was so thrilled.

    • Jennie says:

      Awww… what a great memory. The things in our childhood stick with us. That’s why I love teaching preschool and making those memories. Thank you!

  16. What a great idea to collate your favourite bear books! I haven’t heard of many of these but now that I have two granddaughters (and a grandson due next month) I need to update my book knowledge! Thanks for the ideas. Visiting from Bella’s blog party 🙂

    • Jennie says:

      Thank you, Debbie! I have many posts about children’s books on my blog. I’m picky about reading good ones, too, so you should find quite a few choices. Happy reading! 🙂

  17. Norah says:

    I love bear books. I haven’t read part one yet, but I know you’ve listed a few of my favourites. I can’t wait to see if you’ve included Where’s my Teddy by Jez Alborough.

  18. Annika Perry says:

    I never knew there were so many bear books and they all look adorable! 😀

  19. Beary nice choices, Jennie. I bought Mother Bruce on your recommendation (a while ago) and it’s still a favorite bedtime story for Tornado Boy and I. He’s starting to read it aloud to me!

  20. frenchc1955 says:

    Jennie, yes! Bears are the best!

  21. teacherturnedmommyblog says:

    lots of great books

  22. abbiosbiston says:

    A recent one my son loves is The Bear and the Bees.

  23. These all sound cute, Jennie. but the one with the goslings who think the bear is their mother really made me laugh.

  24. Bears are my totem symbol and I have a number of them around my house – stuffed, fountains, a wood carving about 3+ feet high, etc. And so yes, I must get hold of copies of these books and read them. So good for the soul. I remember when I was doing my first degree in Archaeology, and a lot of the reading was so dry I was choking to death, but then I took a course in Children’s Literature, and it cured me for good. I began to enjoy reading once again, and after that I took one in Literature of the Old West, and it was wonderful too. Boy, we sure need that when we get into dry and boring writing. Thank you kindly for sharing all of this.

    • Jennie says:

      Children’s books definitely clear the ‘choking to death on dry literature’ syndrome. Bear books are the best. I guarantee you will love these, Anne.

      • Something that surprised me the most when reading children’s literature was how many of the alphabet books have words that there is no way a child of the age to be reading them could read or perhaps even recognize from the illustrations. What were they thinking – not only the authors, but the publishers? There are so many words they could have used to help children actually not only learn their alphabet, but words and reading skills at the same time. Such a waste. Children’s books really are a challenge for a writer. But it is a challenge, when respected and honored, will teach a writer to be a really good writer. We don’t need to prove how smart we are; we have to give our children words they can live with. I know I will love bear books since I already lo ve bears and have a number of them around my house and outside.

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