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Kindergarten Books and Activities: We’re Going on a Bear Hunt

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Join us for a bear hunt with these easy and fun lesson plans for a kindergarten literature-based unit!

Book List

A few titles to support your Bear Hunt unit.

Main Selection:

We’re Going on a Bear Hunt by Michael Rosen and Helen Oxenbury
This familiar tale lends itself to a variety of engaging learning activities. See below for gross motor practice, art, media resources and more!

Math Literature:

Equal Smequal by by Virginia Kroll and Philomena O’Neill
Math literature is my son’s favorite part of our unit studies! This joyful book introduces the idea of equal groups as a mouse and his forest friends make teams for a game of tug-of-war. Expand on this title by balancing items on a scale, reenacting the tug-of-war with stuffed animals, toys, or dolls, or demonstrate equal parts with Lego – building the same shapes and towers with different bricks.


For more ideas for math literature see this list of
101 Math Literature Read Alouds with YouTube links.


Jamberry by Bruce Degan
A classic story about a boy, a bear and their love of berries! Expand your love of berries with seasonal berry picking, making your own jam, or a field trip to your local farmers market for your own taste-test jamboree!

Fiction Readers:

Little Bear by by Elsa Holmelund Minarik and Maurice Sendak
We loved learning to read with the Little Bear series. The stories are sweet, playful, and engaging for emerging readers. Check out all six books in this classic series. Use this series as a support to your reading or phonics program – sounding out words, reading simple sentences, pointing out punctuation, and modeling fluency with a read aloud. Don’t miss Maurice Sendak’s Little Bear television series- streaming on Prime.


Grizzly Bears by Gail Gibbons
Gail Gibbons has such a wonderful collection of non-fiction books for children. Her beautifully illustrated book, Grizzly Bears, shows grizzlies in their natural habitat, describes their life cycle, habits and features of these amazing animals. Some ideas for this title: build a bear cave fort and hibernate, write a list of interesting facts about bears, or have a bear meal for dinner – salmon!

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 Go on a Bear Hunt!

Take the spirit of this book outdoors and make your own bear hunt. Your bear hunt might be at a local park or in your own backyard.

Use the lyrical pattern of the story to describe what you see and hear in your surroundings. Walk to your destination, singing along the way. Then quickly run back, just like in the story. Don’t get caught by the bear!


Hands On: Sensory Bin

Fine motor and sensory exploration, role playing, retelling and reenacting a story.

Create your own small-scale forest with your child! Practice fine motor skills when you rip or cut and crunch up paper for the wavy grass and pull apart cotton to make a snowstorm. Describe different textures as you and your child set the scene in the correct order. Retell what the family goes through first, second, and third, then reenact the story with your own “finger people” or figurines.


A list of materials for an indoor sensory bin: wood chips for the forest floor, shredded green paper for the tall wavy grass, a foam or paper blue shape puddle, large cotton balls for the snowstorm, and trees and woodland animals.

Or create your own outdoor sensory bin with found materials.
Don’t be afraid to get dirty!

Animal Parade

Gross Motor and Vocabulary Activity

You’ve been on the bear hunt, now it’s time to be the bear! Have your kids (and Dad, too!) form a line for an Animal Parade.

The book takes you through a bear’s natural habitat. What other animals might the family encounter as they travel through different parts of the forest? Brainstorm animals with your child. Then describe their movements. Move like the animal would across the room. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

Long, Wavy Grass: slither like a snake, jump like a grasshopper

Deep, Cold River: swim like a fish, float like an otter

Thick, Oozy Mud: crawl like a salamander, slither like a snail

Big, Dark Forest: prance like a deer, stand perfectly still and watch like an owl

Swirly, Whirly Snowstorm: hop like a rabbit, pounce like a wolf

Narrow, Gloomy Cave: swoop down like a bat, skitter like a mouse, creep like a spider

Bear Hunt Map

Art, Fine Motor Practice, and Introduction to Maps

20160830_101615_resizedCreate a map of the family’s adventure through the forest. We used very simple materials for this one: construction paper, brown and white tempura paint, popsicle sticks, brown marker, safety scissors and glue.

Use a marker to make a trail of dashes through your forest. Cut out shapes in order and talk about the story with your child as you paste the images on your map one at a time.

One of our very first kindergarten activities and an all-time fridge favorite.



Media Resources

Learn all about grizzly bears with our Grizzly Bear YouTube Playlist.
Runtime approx 20 min. Stream below or click here to view on YouTube.

We’re Going on a Bear Hunt on YouTube

Book Sing-Aloud with book illustrations: 5 min

Song with Movement Directions: 5 min

Animated Feature based on the book: 24 min

Maurice Sendak’s Little Bear – Included with Prime

Stream seasons 1 & 2 here.

Be sure to check out the Little Bear series of books. My son and daughter both loved Little Bear’s adventures with his family and forest friends. First read; then watch the show. You’ll have plenty to talk about! Compare and contrast the characters and their adventures; recognize events from the show that you remember from the books; and continue the story by making up Little Bear adventures of your own!

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Thanks so much for stopping by! What is your favorite Kindergarten picture book? Feel free to post comments and ideas below. Follow all of our adventures on Facebook and Instagram.

Excited to be included in iHomeschool Network’s
A Book & a Big Idea Link Up!


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