Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? by Bill Martin Jr. and Eric Carle, was a favorite read aloud in our home. This story was the beginning of many bedtime routines.
I kept a smaller version in the diaper bag and car seat pocket. The children “read” it in grocery store lines and at restaurant tables. The pictures were perfect for naming animals and the repetitive phrases perfect for chanting.
The story was firmly woven into the fabric of our children’s lives. We created new, fun stories using Brown Bear’s word pattern.
- Family names: Daddy, daddy, who do you see? I see mommy looking at me.
- Pet names: Mason, Mason, who do you see? I see Stripes looking at me.
- The grocery store: Baker, baker, what do you see? I see corn muffins looking at me
Martin and Carle wrote three new twists to their own pattern:
- Polar Bear, Polar Bear, What Do You Hear?
- Baby Bear, Baby Bear, What Do You See?
- Panda Bear, Panda Bear, What Do You See?
When young children memorize storybooks, they think and act like readers. This is a beautiful beginning to a lifetime of loving books—and reading.
Look for these qualities in the very best read alouds for memorizing:
- Delightful, stunning pictures
- Strong characters, familiar theme
- Playful rhyming words
- Rhythm and repetition
- Short story for repeated readings
Be sure to grab my Top Ten Best Books for Children for 2011. These stories with their familiar themes, playful rhyming words, and stunning art work will capture your children’s hearts.