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Lacing Bear Shapes

Cut brown posterboard into bear shapes and punch holes around the edges. Give each child a bear shape and a piece of colorful yarn with one end tapered to make a "needle". Then let the children lace the yarn throughout the holes.

Teddy Bear Puppets

Have the children use brown lunch bags to make simple teddy bear hand puppets. Let them create faces on their puppets by gluing on scraps of construction paper and drawing with felt-tip markers. Add two brown ear shapes to each puppet.

Teddy Bears' Picnic

Give each child a sitting bear shape cut out of brown construction paper. Have the children brush their shapes with a thin layer of glue. Then let them sprinkle coffee grounds (rinsed and dried) all over the glue and shake off the excess. Set the bear shapes aside to dry. Give each child a small paper plate. Let the children glue precut pictures of foods on their plates to make picnic lunches. Hang a red and white checkered tablecloth on a wall or a bulletin board. Attach the bear shapes to the tablecloth, with each bear holding a plate. If desired, add other shapes cut out of construction paper, such as a picnic basket, a shade tree, a sun and grass.

Weighing Bears

Review the concepts of heavy and light by having one child at a time hold a different teddy bear in each hand. Which bear feels heavier? Which feels lighter? Or let the children use a balance to compare the weights of different teddy bears.

Teddy Bear Games

Collect a large group of teddy bears before playing the games below.

The Three Bears

Read the story "The Three Bears" to the children. After you have finished, set out several sets of three objects in small, medium, and large sizes, such as three bowls, three spoons, three cups, and three plates. Have the children divide the objects into three piles, one for the Papa Bear, one for the Mama Bear, and one for the Baby Bear (in that order). When the objects have been grouped according to size, have the children regroup them into piles of like objects.

Teddy Bear Book

Let the children dictate stories about teddy bears while you write them down. (This could be a small group activity or each child could dictate his or her own story.) Have the children illustrate their stories. Then staple them together with a cover to make a Teddy Bear Book.

ABC Bears

Cut 26 teddy bear shapes out of posterboard and write the letters "A" through "Z" on them with a felt-tip marker. Laminate or cover each bear with clear self-stick paper. Then mix up the bears and let the children have fun arranging them in alphabetical order.

Here is a Cave

Read the poem below and let the children make appropriate finger movements.

Here is a cave.

(Bend fingers on one hand.)

Inside is a bear.

(Put thumb inside fingers.)

Now he comes out

To get some fresh air.

(Pop out thumb.)

He stays out all summer

In sunshine and heat.

He hunts in the forest

For berries to eat.

(Move thumb in a circle.)

When snow starts to fall,

He hurries inside

His warm little cave

And there he will hide.

(Put thumb inside fingers.)

Snow covers the cave

Like a fluffy white rug.

Inside the bear sleeps

All cozy and snug.

(Place one hand over the other.)

Teddy Bear Parade

Give each child a box with a rope pull-handle. Let the children decorate their boxes with crepe paper streamers. When the boxes are decorated, have the children place teddy bears inside. Then play music and let the children pull their boxes around the room in a Teddy Bear Parade.

Bear Bounce

Place a small blanket on the floor with a teddy bear in the middle. Have two children each grab two corners of the blanket. Then let them have fun tossing and catching the bear with the blanket.

Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear

As you recite the rhyme below, let the children pretend to be teddy bears and act out the movements.

Teddy bear, teddy bear, turn around.

Teddy bear, teddy bear, touch the ground.

Teddy bear, teddy bear, reach up high.

Teddy bear, teddy bear, touch the sky.

Teddy bear, teddy bear, touch your shoe.

Teddy bear, teddy bear, I love you!

Variation: Let the children use teddy bears as puppets to act out the movements.

Three Brown Bears

Sung to : "Three Blind Mice"

Three brown bears,

Three brown bears,

See all their beds,

See all their chairs.

The mommy cooked in

A big brown pot,

The daddy's porridge

Was much too hot,

The baby bear

Always cried a lot,

Three brown bears.

Peanut Butter Bear Sandwiches

Have the children use a valentine cookie cutter to cut heart shapes out of whole-wheat bread slices (paritally frozen bread cuts easily). Show them how to cut off the points of their hearts to make the bread resemble bear faces. Then let each child spread peanut butter on his or her bear face and use raisins to make eyes and a mouth and a cherry to make a nose.

Bear Cookies

Make or buy bear-shaped cookies. Let the children decorate the cookies with white frosting for polar bears, brown frosting for brown bears, black frosting for black bears, and black and white frosting for panda bears.

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Visitors since July 4, 1998