Three cheers for this wonderful picture book from Martin Waddell. This book is also a warm tale of togetherness, and a powerful message of the grown up providing a protecting and caring environment. I remember times with my own children, when going out for walks in the woods. There are some strange sounds there and if you have no idea what made those sounds, it can be rather scary. In this book, I like how Big Bear told a story about those sounds at the end of the book.
About the Author: Martin Waddell His series on Little Bear and Farmer Duck are his most famous, but Mr. Waddell has written many, many other books as well (214+). Under his own name he publishes mysteries, ghost stories, light comedies, and picture books for children. As Catherine Sefton he has written more complex, emotionally charged books for young adults, several of which are ghost stories while others are political novels.
To see more of Martin Waddell’s books, visit his Amazon Author page.
About the Illustrator: Barbara Firth Her lifelike drawings has make these books a favorite of mine. They are some of the very few children’s books I have found to depict life like bears. These drawings are soft, soothing and winsome. Barbara Firth began drawing when she was three years old. Since then, she illustrated numerous award-winning picture books, including the Big Bear and Little Bear series, written by Martin Waddell. She lived in Middlesex, England.
To see more of Barbara Firth, visit her Goodreads page.
Cause and Effect
The sun melted the ice – dripping sound
The sun softened the snow on the tree branches – plopping sound
Big Bear’s feet walking through the snow – plodding sound
Compare and Contrast City and Forest Environments
Talk About It
What made the plodding sound?
What made the dripping sound?
What made the plopping sound?
What made the woo woo woo sound?
What made the creak, creak, creak sound?
Develop Listening Skills Activities
Help your child to develop their listening and identification skills. These skills are not learned automatically, but re so essential to becoming a good learner. Make learning this skill fun.
What made that sound?
Use opaque containers and put different objects in them to shake. Some examples for fills could be sand, pebbles, marbles, coins, water, rice. Have your child shake the container to see if they can identify the contents. Somehow mark the bottom of the container so the child can identify if they are correct or not in their guess.
Using a Tape Recorder
Record a variety of sounds from around your house with which your child is familiar. Examples, water running, pouring milk, clock, timer, furnace, washing machine, etc. Have the child try to identify the sound or what made it.
Play Simon Says
This is a fun way to play listen and follow. Child only does an action if the instruction begins with “Simon says”. Take turns being the leader.
A Walk in the Outdoors
No matter if you live in the city or the country, you can take a walk outdoors to identify sounds.
Country: birds singing – traffic sounds – gravel under your feet – water in a stream – wind in the trees or grass – geese or ducks overhead
City: What do you hear? -Ambulance – Airplane – Helicopter – dog barking – birds singing – wind in the trees – horn honking – motorcycle – garbage truck – sirens –gravel under your feet – lawnmower – geese or ducks overhead
More Activities for Developing Listening Skills
Make some listening ears for those times when your child may need a reminder that they need to be using their listening skills!