Today, as part of Perfect Picture Book Friday, I’m sharing Kelly Bear – Earth, one of a series of lovely picture books and workbooks that help parents and children talk about important issues and concerns. With Easter coming up this weekend, I’ve included a fun Easter craft at the end.
Kelly Bear – Earth
Written by Leah Davies
Illustrated by Joy Hallett
Publisher: Bureau for at Risk Youth (2008)
Ages: 4 and up
Energy conservation, environmental awareness, caring for the earth, making a difference, behavior
“Hi! My name is Kelly Bear and this is a book about me. I live on planet earth. It’s a wonderful place with plants, animals, air, soil and water. There is only ONE earth, so I’m doing all I can to take care of it. I want everyone to enjoy living here.
Little Kelly Bear finds many ways to help conserve resources and keep the environment clean. She saves water by taking short showers and turning off the water while she is brushing her teeth. Her family have their own vegetable garden and try to buy foods that have less packaging. Kelly Bear is careful not to open the refrigerator until she knows what she wants so she doesn’t have to keep the refrigerator door open and waste electricity. Her parents help by recycling plastic and glass and paper because “everyone on earth is part of one big family and we must work together to take care of each other and our planet.”
Why I like this book:
Children will love Kelly Bear! The text explains how Kelly Bear and her family contribute to the good health of the planet and the simple illustrations clearly show this as well. The author, Leah Davies, has been dedicated to the well-being of children for more than four decades. Her professional experience includes being a certified teacher, school counselor, instructor in the Family and Child Development Department, Auburn University, and director of educational and prevention services at a mental health agency.
How a parent can use this book:
From an Amazon review: “The Kelly Bear Beginnings Series of books is priceless. In a simple yet powerful way they engage young children and help them understand, verbalize and accept their feelings, improve their behaviors, and learn to care for their bodies. In this fourth book, children learn not to waste water, electricity and food, to recycle, and to keep our air clean. The book empowers the child and makes him aware of his environment. These books are invaluable in the classroom as well as in the home.
For those of you who fondly remember the wonderful Mr. Rogers and his Neighborhood, you’ll find a kindred spirit in Leah Davies. The friendly green bear, drawn by the author’s daughter, Joy Hallett, gives children a warm and fuzzy feeling of acceptance and trust.
The series covers feelings, behaviors, health, the environment and saying no to drugs, and it ends with an activity book that reinforces all of these concepts with fun creative activities. The series would also be an excellent vehicle for working with children in a counseling or school situation, as the questions Kelly Bear asks become a springboard for wonderful open discussions.”
You can find out more about this series of books and the author, Leah Davis here: http://www.kellybear.com/index.html
At the end of each book (and the books are short and simple and easy to get through) there is a parent/teacher page with suggestions about what to do after the book is read. This book on ‘Earth’ has various activities such as
- Joining a group that is interested in managing our resources and that includes children.
- Drawing pictures and writing letters to send to newspapers and legislators.
- Planting flower and vegetable seeds
- Making a compost bin to recycle plant material
- Go on a treasure hunt to identify various trees, animals and plants
This book brought back very fond memories. When our oldest son was only 3 years old, we took part in a riverside cleanup. I have pictures of this sweet little boy, dragging a huge plastic garbage bag as we all picked up trash that littered the riverbank. This type of activity encourages a young child to be more aware of protecting the environment. Just as importantly, doing things as a family strengthens the parent-child connection.
Let’s combine a craft activity for Easter with one for this book!
EASTER BEAR BAG
Photo courtesy http://www.allkidsnetwork.com
You know how much I love using paper bags for kid’s craft projects. Your child can use this bag for collecting jelly beans or Easter eggs.
You will need: 1 paper lunch bag, construction paper, glue, markers, scissors, yarn and a hole punch.
- Cut out eyes, ears, nose and bowtie from construction paper…this craft was made for Valentine’s Day originally so there are lots of hearts.
- Glue the pieces onto the front of the bag.
- Punch holes at the top of the bag and string the yarn through the holes and tie to make handles.
- Draw other features with the markers.
What other activities can you do as a family? Find hundreds of them in my book. No batteries required…powered by a child’s imagination and a parent’s participation! Click this link to purchase a copy