Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Ten Little Bears: A Counting Rhyme

Ten Little Bears: A Counting Rhyme
By Kathleen Hague
Illustrated by Michael Hague
4/5 ****
Kindergarten-1st graders

This book’s main use in the classroom would be to practice counting numbers and practice or introduce rhyme. It starts out with 10 little bears, and has a 4-line rhyme represented by 10 bears around the words and a matching illustration on the next page. Then it continues that same format throughout the entire book, each time counting down one bear. I think this would be a great book for beginning readers for many reasons.

First of all, it has very large font, and the pictures are correlated to the words directly. If the words are about bears skating, the picture will be about bears skating. This is a great way for kids to learn to use illustrations to help them figure out words, and then match the word “skate” which they see on the page to the mental image of the illustration of “bears skating”.

The story is written in rhyme, and it is rhyme that is quite easy to hear. So, this would be a good book to read aloud and let the students guess what word comes next after you read the first part of the rhyme. It would also be a good way to pull out those words and create a word matching activity or something of that sort.

Because this is a counting book, there is a pattern that the entire book follows, so it is great for beginning readers, because it will be easy for them to follow along. They are also likely to recognize the number words such as “one, two, three etc…” so reading this book will help them build confidence. Lastly, the book would be easy to use as an example if you wanted your class to create a counting book or to practice rhyming words or something. It is a pretty simple book, but I think there is a lot young readers could get out of it.

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