As part of our ongoing Alphabet Exploration of the letter B, our word for the day was bear. We have an abundance of bears around here, so we decided to go on a bear hunt before bed. I find the best time of day for bear hunting to be before bed. So, while D got G cleaned up after dinner, I went upstairs and hid the bears in plain sight. Then I gathered together a bunch of books about bears.
When G came up with D, I told her we were going to go bear hunting. She had no idea what it was, but she was game.
I told her that I would give her clues to where she could find each bear and then D would help her find the bears. After each clue was given, she ran off with D and found the bear almost immediately. She did not need much help from him and she came back beaming each time.
When she came back we had a little celebration and said: “B is for bear.” Then we placed our trophies in a row so we could count them. Off she went again and again to find the next bear based on the new clue.
When she had hunted the last bear, she came back and we counted the bears one last time and celebrated the successful day on the range!
Then we read every bear book we could find (including Brown Bear, Brown Bear and Polar Bear, Polar Bear). We also played with one of her toys (a bear carousel).
In addition to an exploration of the alphabet, what did all this fun teach our little one?
- Counting skills – we counted each time a bear was caught.
- Listening to instructions – she quickly found out that she would not be able to get another bear until she listened to the clues.
- Prepositions – the clues included descriptive phrases like “on top of, “by,” “next to,” and “beside”
- the geography of our house – everything from Dad’s side of the bed to mom’s office were included.
- Abstract thinking – one of the clues was, “The bear is next to where W sleeps.” This required her to locate in her mind where her sister sleeps and then go find it.
This was so successful! G mentioned hunting each time she saw her bears for the rest of the week and fancies herself a hunter! Such fun! We are going to do it in future weeks for ducks and piggies. It is time the populations of those were thinned out!