This Saturday, September 17, the Eric Carle Museum in Amherst, MA will celebrate the birthday of one of the more famous bears of children’s literature: “Brown Bear” of Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?

Amherst, and its surrounding areas, will celebrate by hiding the characters from the book in various spots.  We hope to find at least one when we visit on the last day of the exhibit in October!   brownbear_main

Besides loving birthdays, why else are we noting this 50th birthday at Building Blocks? Because Brown Bear, Brown Bear is one of the most recommended and read books by the SLPs at our office. We love it for its simple pictures, familiar vocabulary, and rhyming, repetitive phrasing. It is a great book for our youngest set (age 12-24 months). The visuals are capturing and the words are familiar. The pattern of the book is similar to a nursery rhyme or song, with its repeating lines (e.g., “What do you see? I see a ___looking at me”).  The repetitive nature allows the child to begin to predict what will come next and enable them to fill in that final word or animal name.  Often we will model a gesture for “me” by tapping our own chest or the child’s chest to cue them.  Many times an independent gesture or even sound has been elicited by the end of one reading of Brown Bear, Brown Bear.

Check out an example below:


Brown Bear, Brown Bear isn’t only for little ones. Preschool kids (ages 3-5) can enjoy it for early reading purposes or as a companion book to a more advanced activity (e.g., categorization, matching, game playing).  Our Brown Bear Pinterest page has more ideas and activities.

Happy Birthday Brown Bear! Any excuse to have cake this weekend!