Ask Mr. Bear, first published in 1932, is a sweet tale about a boy trying to find the perfect birthday present for his mother. He seeks advice from all of the animals only to find that his mother already has the items suggested. In the end, the animals advised him to ask Mr. Bear who happened to have the best idea… a great big bear hug.
Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not grudgingly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.
2 Corinthians 9:7
We talked about ways we could be cheerful givers and thoughtful of others. Clara said we can give toys; Benjamin thought of love and help — all good ideas I thought. In the story, Danny seeks advice from the animals. We discussed what it means to seek advice and you can either choose to take it or leave it, but it’s a wise thing to do.
We spent a lot of time re-enacting and retelling the story with our Usborne Press-Out Paper Farm. They both loved this and spent a lot of time lost in play. It is really cute.
We sampled goat cheese, cream, and eggs… as suggested by the goat, cow, and hen.
We studied a goose feather pulled from one of our coats… the idea from the goose.
Cozied up in a wool blanket… advice from the sheep.
And of course spent lots of time doling out great big bear hugs.
We practiced moving like the animals from the story. We skipped, trotted, galloped, and hopped all while making our best animal impersonations.
We ate a “farm fresh” lunch one day. Eggs, goat cheese, bacon, milk, and apples. Clara loved the feta – Benjamin did not.
We had a very merry un-birthday party which was SO much fun! We watched the scene from Alice and Wonderland and talked about what makes a birthday special. We baked an un-birthday cake, wore party hats, and made some noise!
Since the story is about gift giving, we practiced our thoughtfulness by finding things around the house to wrap up. I also let them each choose a small token for each other from the store. We role played how to open gifts — both graciously and rudely — great hilarity ensued!
We had a bunch of lemons sitting around after making the lemon cake, so they got to work juicing. I had no idea juicing could be so much fun. I think they spent at least an hour juicing lemons which was just enough to make freshly squeezed lemonade!
Other fun things this week:
Benjamin enjoyed writing with the quick drying tempura paint sticks. They are a lot of fun to color with and they don’t smear.
We had some fun for St. Patrick’s Day. We read about leprechauns, stamped shamrocks with marshmallows, and painted a leprechaun.
We had so much fun this week! It is amazing to me how much you can pull from such a simple and sweet story.