Grade: Elementary
Subject: Literature

#561. Brown Bear, Brown Bear

Literature, level: Elementary
Posted Sun Aug 9 15:13:56 PDT 1998 by Literature chatboard and Early-childhood mailring ().
Materials Required: varied
Activity Time: varied
Concepts Taught: varied

A collection of literature extension activities from
literature board and early_childhood mailring. July and August

When I did Brown Bear with my class last year, we did a choral
reading activity. This is a great book to try choral reading with,
since it's so repetitive and the kids love it.

We'd previously read the book MANY times before, and the
children already knew it. You have to set the stage for them so to
speak, before just jumping in and recording the book. Tell them
what you're going to do and let them practice reading through with
you as a group a couple of times, or until you feel they're ready.
When they're ready to read, record them reading it together as a
group. You'll still have to read softly along with them to keep
the pace for the group. Afterwards, let them listen to the tape and
they'll enjoy trying to figure out the voices and listening for their
own voice. Then the tape and the book go into the Listening

If you have a really large class, you could divide it into groups and
do the activity with each group.

This one came from Open Court I think or that is when I started
using it.
"Letter A, letter A what do you see? I see letter B looking at me"

" /a/ /a/ A what do you hear? I hear /b/ /b/ B talking to me" etc.

Vickie /k/VA

Around Halloween or during October I have the children make a
book called "Pumpkin, Pumpkin, What do you see?" Since I teach
kindergarten, I encourage the children to use their invented
spelling and pictures for each page. I go in and write "book
writing" to model and provide a readable portion for
parents. We cut the books out in the shape of a pumpkin and the
children usually use Halloween characters for their book, but since
I leave it up to them, I get all sorts of great ideas from them! Each
child has their own book and their parents love it when they come
home and read it.


We did little books to go along with our five senses unit around
Christmas time. What do you see, What do you hear, What do you
smell etc. It would be interesting to do it again during a different
season of the year.

Someone off the loop gave me this idea so I can't take credit only
say that I used it successfully.
Using the pattern of Brown Bear, I created a class book using
photos of the students and their first names. I laminated, coil
bound and sent home this book on a rotating basis with students
to read with their parents. It helped children learn peer names,
while others learned to read and print peer names. This book also
became a class favorite and often small groups of children would
gather around to read it by themselves. My incentive was to assist
the child who really didn't know the names of his/her classmates.
It really helped. I also have teacher made big books based on the
pattern for Halloween, Christmas, the ocean and a few others.
This pattern lends itself to any theme.

One of our favorite class books is one that we do at Halloween.
When all the children are dressed in their costumes I take a
picture of them, individually. We glue each picture on a page in
the book, with the words
__________,___________ Who do you see? I see __________ looking
at me. In the blanks we name the character that each child is
dressed as. The children go back to this book all year long,
recalling the costumes and reading the text.


I used the theme from Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do you
see? and integrated it into my unit on the farm. We made a class
book called Farmer, Farmer, What do you see? Here is an example
of one page:

Farmer, Farmer,
What do you see?
(We scanned the child's picture and placed it here beside their
Tammy says:" I see
a goat looking at me. ( we scanned pictures of the animal that they
choose and placed it here)

Each child had a page in our class book. I glued farm fabric on the
cover and called the book "Miss Dalton's Farmland". I laminated
the pages and tied the book together with shoestrings. The kids
loved their "class book" I placed it in my literature center and they
wore it out. They were so proud of their book!!!


Here's a couple of ideas for Brown Bear, Brown Bear that I took
from Pat Cunningham's book, Classrooms That Work. After
reading the book several times during shared reading, write each
word on individual cards or sentence strips cut to size. Ex. take
one of the pages from the book like "Brown Bear, brown bear, what
do you see?" and write each word from this sentence individually.
Then the kids can practice "being the words" while you read the
book together...matching their words with the text in the
book. Then you can put some of these same word cards
(laminated of course), along with baskets, or cans marked 1-8, in
the Math center, and explain to the kids to take a card and count
how many letters are in that word then place in the appropriate
numbered container. Have the children work with a partner, one
counts while the other checks, then reverse roles.

WOW! I have been out of town for a while and I don't know if I
will possibly be able to read all of my mail. I hope I don't miss
something WONDERFUL.
I did want to share my Brown Bear activity. I also read (and
reread and reread) this book the first couple of weeks, and we use
our classroom bear, "Hershey" to play a name game- "Hershey,
Hershey," who do you see, I see *Jessica* looking at me.


We make several books through out the year with the brown bear
pattern. The most read is made with xerox copies of the children's
pictures using their names. We also have made White Ghost,
White Ghost for Halloween. I also makea small individual books
with different colored bears I see a (color)________bear.
We also have a picture of Brown bear that we paint with cocoa.

Greg and Steve have this story as a song on Playing
Favorites.I use it and turn the pages of the book as we sing
along. Also, I ordered the Brown Bear set from Childwood
and will use it. You could write the words to go along with
each character on magnetic strips for your first graders. They
could place them under the appropriate magnet character.

When I do Brown Bear we do our own book. We take a walk
around the school and look at things we might want to put in the
book then come back and write it. They each have a piece of paper
and they write what they saw, each one is different. then we put it
in the book. I do copy the pages so each child will have their own
book to take home. We "read" this several times together, and the
pictures they drew help them.

We do the same when we get to Polar Bear in the middle of winter.
This is a neat thing to gauge growth.

In the Spring we do it but with a bird that has come back after the
winter. We discuss all the "new" things it sees. I send all three
home in their portfolio.


here's an 'oldie' but 'goodie' to include:

I make a master sheet, with head & shoulders outlined in the
middle...text on top & bottom.

each child draws his/herself & fills in the name lines...text
follows the original book (except it's "who" not "what" do you

the last child sees me...and we all get a chuckle out of my
picture. the kinders love the fact that I'm in the book, too!

I photocopy & shrink all of their pictures, and add them to the
last page: "I see Arielle, Christina....looking at me!"

we call the book "Children, children, who do you see?" it's one of
the first books they can read all by themselves, helps with name
recognition, self-esteem...and lets the parents see the array of
abilities in the class as far as drawing and name-writing!'s another :o)

use the same format for Halloween...with the children's
names ("Arielle, Arielle, what do you see?")...but have them see
fall/Halloween things..."I see a scarecrow looking at me."

this can also be programmed to reinforce color words by including
a color word for each object. sometimes I provide a blank outline
of a picture, let the kinders pick a color word from a paper bag,
read it, color the picture...that becomes their page...can be very
funny..."I see a purple jack-o-lantern looking at me!"

this format can be used to reinforce numbers ("I see 3 ghosts
looking at me."), whatever...we're only limited by our
imaginations :o)

Posted by Donna,

I think Brown Bear is one of the most beloved of books! My
always like to act out the story. We use sentence strip headbands
for the different animals - the children can help make these if you
aren't committed to realism - the children made the ears of the
animals and paste them onto sentence strips which are them
to the correct size. The color and name of the animal can be
written on the sentence strip if you want. Some years the children
have worn necklaces with just the color word hanging on them - I
usually write the color word in the actual color for the beginners.
My children also like to make class books based on the book - this
can be geared to themes - jobs, community helpers, transportation,
etc - I think I will try one this year based on the five senses and
see how that works.
I forgot to post another book I use with Brown Bear that has a
similar pattern - it's called I Went Walking by Sue Williams -
it is good for predicting because the illustrations show the
tail of the next animal and the children love to guess what's
I made stick puppets that relate to each animal. there are enough
for half the class to participate. Each child with a puppet stands
in front of the group. Then my "star" gets to hold the book and
turn the pages. We sing the song from Steve and Greg and as each
animal is named those with the puppets raise theirs so that
everyone can see. When they get to Teacher, Teacher all of the
students stand up and then I get to sing back to them.. Then we
trade puppets and do it all over again!!! I love this and so do my
We also make many pattern books to go with our theme. Of course
we read Polar Bear. Polar Bear during our 5 senses unit.