Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Picture Books - Sleep Tight, Little Bear

Sleep Tight, Little Bear by Martin Waddell and illustrated by Barbara Firth 2005

This book is one of several by Waddell in the Little Bear series, but the first I have read. It is a quaint little story about Little Bear who is beginning to spread his wings, so to speak. Little Bear discovers a cave just his size near the one he shares with Big Bear. Although he wants to make the new cave his own little hideaway and eat and sleep there, he seems to be troubled as now Big Bear is all by himself. Waddell does a good job of working the story around encouraging little ones that it is okay to explore and to leave the "cave" for awhile, but there is still a warm and cozy spot waiting for them at home for reassurance and stability (until they are really ready). Now I use the pronoun he to describe Little Bear, but both bears could easily be "she" or 'he" bears, at least to me. The artwork is a pleasant combination I believe of watercolors and pencil and captures the easy to relate to emotions well.

The book copy I checked out included a DVD in the back, but it did not reference it anywhere as being included. Hum? Anyway, I'm still not use to the idea of having the book also accompanied by DVD unless it is to help with learning to read the book. This one is that of Waddell reading the story with an occasional glimpse of the book's illustrations. Popping in a DVD to have the book read to your child instead of doing it yourself seems to take out the most significant part of interaction that books create. Maybe there are other uses for the DVD that I am missing the boat on, but I am an old fashion girl who likes to hold a book. (Although, the DVD would help those with visual impairments to be able to enjoy hearing the story, since there are a limited number of "seeing" books available.)

I think this story is suited for preschool to kindergarten age kids, but I would not consider it a typical bedtime story book.

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