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Last year I started creating little storytelling and retelling trays with some of my classes favorite books. We made one for The Very Hungry Caterpillar ,but there is something magical about Brown Bear Brown Bear, What Do You See? It’s my go-to book when no other book will grab a child’s attention. Maybe it is the repetition that is soothing or the big bold colors I don’t know for sure, but I know it just WORKS. I created this super simple color matching game for my 2-3-year-olds, but older kids will like it too. The colors are in the same order as the animals appear in the book and children can use this by simply matching up colors, or by turning it into a retelling activity.
I used these AWESOME magnets I had been eyeing for ages and finally bought. You can get them here. In addition to this activity, you can use them for all sorts of storytelling activities, sorting, and even eye spy. I love putting them up and having a child find the polar bear or the bug FAT caterpillar. There are tons of recognizable Eric Carle favorites in this pack.
Gather your materials. You will need the Eric Carle magnets; you could make your won with clip art or your own hand-drawn animals and add magnets to them. You will also need this printable ( click to print), a metal cookie sheet, a bowl to hold the magnets, and of course the book!
Print out the color matching mat and pop it on the cookie sheet.
Put the magnets in the bowl.
Read the story and match them up!
This is a GREAT free choice activity especially after you have read the book at a circle time.
Don’t police how the children use this; it will likely spark a lot of pretend play, storytelling as well as color recognition. If nothing else the children will feel more connected to the book and will start talking about it. This is a great thing and a wonderful building block for comprehension later in their literacy development.
Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? by Bill Martin Jr. is a book that can go with a baby from infancy through toddlerhood and into the preschool years. The bold colors of the illustrations by Eric Carle are perfect for catching infants’ attention and will continue to grab it through the years. With the turn of each page, the reader is left wondering what’s next, and if the reader is my son he will cut you off to tell you what’s coming next before you have a chance to turn the page. There are other titles in the series, including; Polar Bear, Polar Bear, What Do You Hear?, Baby Bear, Baby Bear, What Do You See? , and Panda Bear, Panda Bear, What Do You See? but this one is my very favorite!