Activity Plan 5-6: Famous Bears
Bears lead the way in this activity that encourages children to compare and contrast story characters and events.
- Grades: PreK–K
- variety of books about bears (such as Winnie the Pooh, the Berenstain Bears, Corduroy, Paddington Bear, and Yogi and Boo Boo)
- chart paper (cereal, crackers, cookies, cake mix), milk cartons, diaper boxes, wipe containers, shoeboxes, gift boxes, canisters (oatmeal, coffee), and large yogurt or cottage cheese containers
- markers and crayons
- drawing paper
Objective: Children will engage in literacy activities and develop their abilities to compare, contrast, and retell stories.
In Advance: Send a note home to families requesting donations of the suggested recycled boxes, canisters, containers, and newspapers. Store the recycled materials in the large cardboard box.
- Explain to children that they will enjoy several bear stories and learn how they are similar and how they are different. Invite children to assist in choosing several books that they will use for the activity. Children can also bring in favorite bear stories that they may have at home.
- Read a book each day to children and create language experience charts to record children's comments about each book. Encourage children to think about particular aspects of each story, such as what the story was about, the main characters, type of bears, the setting, did the story teach a lesson, and did the story remind them of another bear story or something that could really happen.
- Provide children with drawing and writing materials after story time. Invite them to write about or draw a favorite character, scene, or event in the book.
- After children have listened to and discussed the stories, review all their language experience charts. Engage children in a discussion about the different stories. Why do they think that bears are popular characters in children's stories? Which story was their favorite? Why?
- Encourage children to create graphs to record different types of information about the stories they read. Create a bar graph that lists the title of each story. Cut out small bear shapes. Ask children to glue a bear shape below their favorite story. Count the number of bears in each story column. Invite children to summarize the information.
Art: Bear Puppets. Provide children with lunch-size paper bags, tempera paint and paintbrushes, construction paper, scissors, and glue so they can create bear puppets. Invite children to share their puppets during group time. Encourage them to work together and use their puppets to talk about events from the school year.