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Little Bear by Else Holmelund Minarik

Little Bear (original 1957; edition 1985)

by Else Holmelund Minarik

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2,585None2,303 (4.07)20
Title:Little Bear
Authors:Else Holmelund Minarik
Info:Trophy Pr (1985), Edition: 1, Paperback, 63 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:Bears, birthday, moon

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Little Bear by Else Holmelund Minarik (1957)



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» See also 20 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 37 (next | show all)
Flesch-Kincaid 1.3, Gunning Fog 3.9, Coleman-Liau 6.4
  LitCouncilCC | Apr 16, 2014 |
This book is one of my first books that helped me learn to read. The book that I currently possess was my grandmother, mother, and now belongs to me. This book allows children the ability to build their own imagination, as well as real life understandings.
This book is about a little bear and many different adventures that he has to go through. The first story is about what the sensation of cold is. He second story is about Little Bear's birthday soup. All of his friends bring something for the birthday soup, but he though his mother forgot about him and his birthday. She later brings in a cake and he is happy that she did not forget about his birthday.
  Bettymz | Dec 3, 2013 |
Little Bear;

Very cute picture storybook with 4 little stories:
What Will Little Bear Wear?
Birthday Soup
Little Bear Goes to the Moon &
Little Bear's Wish.
A delightful story of of Little Bear & Mama Bear trying to keep Little Bear warm. Little Bear, of course, has help from Hen, Owl & Duck. Wonderful artwork of Maurice Sendak accompanies Minarik's stories of Little Bear. ( )
  rainpebble | Jul 5, 2013 |
The little bear series is cute, comforting and feels like cotton candy--sweet and airless.

I'm not a great fan of this series. I know I'm in the minority and that many adults have fond memories of this series.

The illustrations of Sendak are, as always delightful. These were drawn at an early time in his career and the images and softer and darling (not a word that Sendak would appreciate.)

This book is broken into four stories of little bear and his adventures. He looks for something to wear and then realizes that he carries his warmth of fur with him wherever he goes.

Fearful that his family and friends will not remember his birthday, he invites them for soup. Delightfully surprised, he is given a large cake with candles.

In the third story little bear makes a space helmet and tries to go to the moon. Tumbling and falling, he returns to home where he eats lunch and is secure in the love of his mother.

The final story contains lush drawings of the wishes of little bear. ( )
  Whisper1 | Jun 27, 2013 |
Else Holmelund Minarik's five Little Bear books, which followed their eponymous ursine hero through some of the adventures of childhood, were one of the staples of my own personal library as a girl, and I recall reading them over and over again, until my copies fell apart. Gentle and reassuring, they are also wonderfully and subtly humorous, offering a perfectly realized depiction of a young child's interaction with the people and places in his own small world. Like subsequent installments, this first title contains four stories, each of which gently highlights some reality of child life.

In What Will Little Bear Wear?, our little hero repeatedly brings his sartorial troubles to Mother Bear, confident in her ability to solve the problem, only to learn eventually that he had what he needed all along. Birthday Soup plays with the common childhood fear of having one's birthday forgotten, allowing Little Bear the opportunity to make something for himself, before reassurance (and cake!) are offered. Little Bear Goes to the Moon sees the adorable bear setting off to have an adventure far away, discovering upon his return that playing a stranger is only fun if the strength of love and home are a solid reality, behind the make-believe. And finally, Little Bear's Wish finds the ursine mother and son enjoying the intimacy of bedtime, as Little Bear learns that some wishes are more likely to be granted than others, and that Mother Bear has wishes of her own.

Originally published in 1957, Little Bear was the very first entry in HarperCollins' iconic I Can Read collection, which to this day is considered one of the best beginning reader series available. It was an auspicious beginning, as it perfectly captures the gentle rhythms of childhood exploration and retreat, and of the child's bond with his mother. Rereading it as an adult, I was struck by the often humorous nature of the exchanges between Little Bear and Mother Bear, with their sly back-and-forth dialogue. Text and artwork - the latter supplied by the immensely talented Maurice Sendak, whose Where the Wild Things Are offers another perceptive depiction of childhood reality - make it clear that Mother Bear knows and understands her son's need for both freedom and safety: his desire to explore the outside world and then return to her. The sympathy for the child perspective that is evident here never feels condescending, however, and even though this is a book for younger children, the author respects her audience enough to be honest with them about some of the limitations - not every wish will be granted, for instance - that they will inevitably confront.

Beautifully written and illustrated, Little Bear is more than deserving of its status as a classic of children's literature, and belongs in every young person's library! Highly, highly recommended to all beginning readers. ( )
  AbigailAdams26 | Apr 17, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 37 (next | show all)
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Minarik, Else Holmelundprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Sendak, MauriceIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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Book description
Little Bear is remarkably like a typical 4-6 year old. The stories in the book can be read on their own, or as chapters of a larger book with the final chapter tying them together. I don't like that Mother Bear tells Little Bear that he can't have his big wishes, but he can have the last wish because "it's just a little wish". The stories have enough repetition that it feels longer while still being fairly simple to read, making it a good one to practice reading fluency.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0064440044, Paperback)

This is the first I Can Read Book ever, and the first of five classic Little Bear books, expressly designed for beginning readers. Elsa Holmelund Minarik and Maurice Sendak teamed up to create these simple stories that are deeply comforting and lovingly playful. In one story, "Birthday Soup," Little Bear cannot find his mother and presumes she has forgotten his birthday. With the prospect of guests arriving and no cake in sight, he sets out to make birthday soup (all his friends like soup). Just as the gathering is sitting down for soup, Mother Bear shows up with a big, beautiful birthday cake. "I never did forget your birthday, and I never will," she says to her son as he hugs her leg. In "Little Bear Goes to the Moon," Little Bear declares that he will fly to the moon in his new space helmet. Mother Bear tells him to be back by lunch, and he is. The gentle, teasing repartee between Little Bear and his mother will delight young readers, and the spacious layout and large type will encourage them to keep on reading! (Ages 4 to 8)

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:38:46 -0400)

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Little Bear's four adventures include taking a trip to the moon and having a birthday party.

(summary from another edition)

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