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Years ago my friend had a daughter and we all lived together, one day she came home with a copy of 'We're going on a bear hunt' AND the DVD. I remember the DVD being on repeatedly every morning and the irritation I felt at hearing the story over and over again.... Now I have my own children I just simply had to buy a copy to see if the magic would feel different with my own children, and I was right.
The book is available with or without the DVD and varies in price - I brought my copy with the DVD from a shop on ebay for £6.99, however it is available in all good bookstores and online retailers.
The story is about a family going on a bear hunt and is very repetitive, however it is a 'sing song' type story (the DVD will teach you the 'tune'!) and kids can easily pick up whats coming next... The family's journey takes us through long grass, mud, a river and even a forest, all in their hunt for a bear!
The book is beautifully illustrated for each part of the journey and you can follow the story just by the pictures, which is good for younger children.
Each section begins 'We're going on a bear hunt, we're going to catch a big one, what a beautiful day, we're not scared'. For those of us with talking children they will easily pick up this part of the story, after a week my son is already talking along with me as I have great fun animating the story for them both. Each time this is said we then encounter a problem (the grass, mud etc!) and we have an 'Uh oh!' moment, again kids pick this up easily, and enjoy joining in with the story and getting animated themselves. We then have descriptive words for what we have encountered repeated 3 times - for instance 'squelch squerch' for the mud and 'swishy swashy' for the long grass. My son has also started to pick up these parts and enjoys doing actions and gleefully saying the story with me!
The family find a cave and 'tip toe tip toe' in to find the bear, now I will say my son can be quite easily scared of things and at first glance was a bit unsure of the picture of the bear (he knows bears to be nice and cuddly like Pooh Bear, not scary looking!) but with a gentle reminder from me that hes friendly and making light of it he was fine - some other children may react the same way, or maybe my son is just a bit of a wuss! The family then race back home, back through all the obsticales they encountered on the way and dive under the duvet to declare 'we're not going on a bear hunt again!'.
The DVD is the same as the book, with the same images as the book shown as sing song voices read the story along for your children. Again this is perfect for teaching them to join in, but it can get quite annoying hearing it over and over again from someone else! I prefer just to read the book and do tend to avoid the DVD.
Overall I highly recommend this book as a great way to involve your children in story time and to make it fun!
We received this book with the dvd in a pack of 6 all the same (book with dvd of the story). My son was 2 years 7 months when he received it and he enjoyed it then and still loves it now (almost 4). The illustrations are in coloured sketch and good pictures for the little ones to look at whilst reading.
Aimed at preschool upwards, The story is about a family (mum, dad 3 children and a dog) going on a bear hunt. Every obstacle they meet had the same phrase
"we cant go over it
We cant go under it
oh no we've got to go through it"
Finally they meet the bear and run all the way back through everything they came through and its intense and nerving for the young reader until they make it home and get into bed to hide, only to realise they have forgot to shut the door.
I must admit the first couple of times i read this i found the repetitive phrases boring. But i have grown to quite like the story and the build up to when they find the bear and the rush to get away from it.
The most appealing part is i think the repetitive parts as i mentioned the same phrase over and over and the fact they go through all the mud, snow storms, river, forest etc and then go back the same way. The young listeners feel at ease with the familiarity yet some intensity of the bear chase.
The book is also available without the dvd. I have found it to be a favourite among people, one that most children will read in nursery!
This is what I'd call a 'classic' kid's book, and for that reason I had avoided it in the past because I have bought 'classics' based on rave reviews and we had ended up being really disappointed with them - I'm referring to books such as 'Brown Bear Brown Bear', 'Each Peach Pear Plum' and 'Peepo'...amongst others. I have these purchased after reading glowing reviews, and both myself and the kids have been really disappointed, with the children showing no interest whatsoever.
However, my mother in law bought 'We're Going On A Bear Hunt' (including a DVD) for my eldest daughter a couple of years ago, and I'm so glad she did! It is most definitely a favourite read with both my 4 year old and my 2 year old, and also an enjoyable DVD (even if it does only last 6 minutes), so I'm pleased it was a gift, because I would never have bought it myself.
From the title you might have already guessed it's about a bear hunt. A family of four children, and I guess their father, and the dog, decide to go on a bear hunt, but along the way they encounter various obstacles such as grass, mud, a river, a forest, a snow storm...and finally a cave...and who is hiding in the cave...A BEAR!! So they make a hasty retreat back through all the obstacles and home into bed and under the covers, and ultimately make the decision to never go on a bear hunt again!
Now this is not your average story and it is not told in an average way. First of all, when you are reading the story you cannot help being drawn into the chant like words, and this rhythm is repeated throughout the book. For instance the opening lines are:
'We're going on a bear hunt,
We're going to catch a big one,
What a beautiful day!
We're not scared'
And this text is repeated constantly through the book after each obstacle they encounter and overcome, it goes back to the text above, as if they are plodding along to find a bear, no matter what they come across. Unless of course it is actually a bear, then they turn on their heels and run.
Each obstacle provides a different experience for the reader and listener alike, but again the text is repetitive, making it chant like. Each incident, for example, the grass is described as long wavy grass, or the mud which is described as thick oozy mud is followed with the same repetitive text:
'We can't go over it,
We can't go under it.
Oh No! We've got to go through it!'
And then follows a full page with only a few words trying to express the feeling or sound of the situation in question such as 'SWISHY SWASHY' for the grass, or 'HOO WOO' for the snow storm...you get the idea.
Finally they get to the cave and tiptoe inside until 'WHAT'S THAT?' And they describe the bear by pointing out each feature on its face until they realise it is actually a bear. So the family backtracks as fast as possible, but they still have to go back through everything they have just come through. However this time it is all done very speedily and rather than chanting this part of the book you end up speed-reading it to help them along in their quest to get safely back home!
Everything is punctuated with exclamation marks to make you understand the emergency of the situation. And as they are entering their house, most of the sentences are shortened to 2 or 3 words as if you are barking orders to the family to get them safely into their bed and under the covers.
The final page is brilliant - all the family, including Dad and the dog are under the covers, and the text just reads:
'We're not going on a bear hunt again.'
It really is cleverly written, and when I first looked through the book before showing it to my daughter I was a bit dubious as to whether the repetitive tone of the book would actually hold her attention, and I was not sure if she would actually understand the story. She was only 2 at the time and her attention span was not great so if I'm honest I was reluctant to read it to her, but to my relief she seemed to fall in love with it almost straight away.
I'm not sure if it because as you read it you find yourself singing or chanting the words, and the way it is written forces you to express yourself as you are reading it. I always seem to get rather excitable when I am reading it aloud and I think this is what my children enjoy, they love an excitable parent! The downside of this is that my youngest seems to actually believe what is going on and every time I have read it to her, she has to reassure herself that there are no bears in our house!
I'm not very good at describing illustrations, but to me these are quite old fashioned in their design. They are quite realistic in that the people actually look like people; they actually remind me of story books I was reading when I was a child, probably because this book originates from that time, (late 1980s I think).
Anyway, at first glance I thought the illustrations were quite boring and with them alternation between black and white and colour, I was convinced they would not interest a child, especially a 2 year old. But as you read the story you find that the pictures really add to the feel of the book. Done in water colour they have a sketch like feel to them and this really captures the mood of the story. For instance, when they are walking through the grass, the grass is all blurred and you can just feel the wind blowing at it. Little touches like the girl's hair blowing in the wind really help you to feel what is going on.
Also what I now love about the illustrations is that they really give a sense of family, this is because the father has always got a child close by, be it the baby on his shoulders, or the little girl with her arms around him peering into the cave, or the little boy with his arms wrapped round his leg as they venture into the snow storm. It just makes you feel like this is a loving family going on a grand adventure and their Dad is with them every step of the way.
My children love to look at the pictures as I am reading the story, and my 4 year old often asks questions about one of the girls, or what the dog is doing, or why they are taking their shoes off before they go in the river. They are listening to the story but at the same time are absorbing the illustrations as we go along.
I think the illustrations are a vital part of this book, you wouldn't enjoy the story without the illustrations, and you wouldn't enjoy the illustrations without the story. They come as a package deal and it works fabulously. This is definitely one of those timeless classic books that I'm sure children will enjoy for generations to come!! And this is one classic I can definitely recommend to others.
This version of the book comes with a DVD which is basically a transferral of the illustrations into DVD format. They have made some of the figures from the book move slightly, but it is in no way a cartoon. It is more like a story CD, but with pictures. The DVD is narrated by Kevin Whately and Emelia Fox, with specially composed background music. I think it's a lovely addition to the book and the narrators really do the story justice, but reading the book yourself is a much more satisfying experience, for you and your kids.
Highly recommended by me and my kids.
Written by Michael Rosen and illustrated by Helen Oxenbury.
Winner of the Smarties Book Prize
Highly Commended for the Kate Greenaway Medal
RRP £7.99 but currently available on Amazon for £4.68 (Feb 2011).
I have to say this has to be one of my favourite children's books. I first came across this book some 11 years ago when I was training to be a nursery nurse and instantly loved it.
The book is about a family who one day decide to go on a 'bear hunt' so off they trot, they have to get though several simple obstacles such as big grass and wind until eventually they find a deep dark cave and carefully venture in, what do they find? - Well you'll have to read it find out!!
The thing I love most about this book is its rhythmic pattern, you'll find you can't help but sing the words. You will also find after a couple of reads you can sing it from memory which is great for kids looking at the pictures. This also helps the children to learn a young age such as turning pages, and understanding that the written word has meaning. It also really easy for the children to recall and help's to develop their memory.
The DVD has a cartoon version of the book which is a really good visual aid, and as its only five minutes long its really handy or saying ok you can a watch a DVD before bed / homework / school and putting this one on, nifty little trick.
You can get it in normal size and in big book size or hardback big book, there are also lots of accessories you can buy for it, like I have also got a board game and you can get teddies and puppets of the character. So you could end up adding all your own bits into it.
This is a great book for children and adults alike the whole family will love it
I came across this book about 7 years ago when a relative came to stay with us with her 6 month old baby. I watched her read the book to the baby in a really animated way, and fell in love with the story.
I was asked what someone should buy my baby, and i remembered the book and asked for it. I have this exact one that comes with the DVD. We have watched the DVD, but i prefer reading the book as we have such good fun reading it.
It was also read a lot to my oldest son and his peers at nursery, and the nursery staff were amazed that this bunch of 2 year olds were walking round the garden at playtime and trying to recreate the story. My son has now heard this story so many times that he knows it off by heart and sits 'reading' it to his brother.
For anyone not familiar with the story, a family go out on a bear hunt. They want to catch a big one, and they are definitely not scared. They start their journey crossing a green pleasant grassy field, and as the journey goes on, the scenery changes and becomes a bit more scary. A large river, swampy mud, a scary forest, a snow storm and finally a gloomy cave.
The book is very descriptive, and what my children enjoy most is that each bit of scenery is accompanied by a description that sounds like it.
-long grass, goes swishy swashy
-the mud, goes squelch, squerch.
When the family find the bear, they are so scared they immediately turn and run home back through all the places they have just seen. When i read this i read it really quickly as though we are really running.
The DVD is a short cartoon version of the story. It shows the same illustrations you see in the book so it matches well. It is narrated by Kevin Whately and Emilia Fox, and this is what puts me off a bit. They are too well known for me, and it distracts a lot from following the story. Of course this is only my problem, as my kids have no idea who these people are, but if i am sitting there with them i don't say, 'hey, let's watch this one today.'
It is an ideal length if you just want to do a quick job while they watch it, and is going to engage them for the whole 10 minutes.
It's rare for me to spoil the plot of a book as much as this one so be warned if you don't want to know the plot of this abomination look away now (or click out of the review as simply looking away won't remove it from your screen unless you've got one of those new thought controlled pcs that were recently banned in Westminster due to the amount of right-wing dominatrix sites that were being visited "by accident").
I fear I have to spoil the plot because the nations parents should be warned about how dangerous, how subversive and how sickening this book is. I would not be able to consume a muffin at the next meeting of the WI without vomiting in shame if I did not pen this warning.
The story, such as it is, which was penned by Michael Rosen, illustrated by Helen Oxenbury in numerous variations by Walker Books depicts that most troubling family situation of a single-parent encouraging his children to engage in dangerous activities whilst hunting.
We all know that outside of the glorious pursuit of foxes, that even battle between men with horses, dogs and guns and small canines, hunting is wrong yet here we have a popular text that actively encourages it.
How many more stories in the national press involving toddlers attacking massive mammals do we have to read before this book is taken out of circulation and burnt?
You may think I'm over-reacting somewhat but please, allow me to take you through the book before you condemn me.
We start the text with the announcement that 'We're going on a bear hunt'... We don't know why the poor bear is being hunted, is it for fur, is it for pure vindictive harrassment or is there murder in mind? We simply don't know yet, We then see the hunters: A man carrying a toddler, three other children running wild and a dog, the youths obviously being led by this man... They walk through a field, they reach 'long wavy grass' that the man forces them to walk through without any concern that they might get grass-cuts or suffer from hayfever...
But worse is to come...so far we've witnessed a fairly innocent walk through a field, ok the alleged intent is to hunt a bear but so far it's not too bad. Then having re-iterated the fact that they are hunting a bear and that they're not scared they come to a 'deep cold river'.
What does our parent of the year do? He forces his children to wade through it!
Let me re-iterate that... A grown man, in charge of 4 children wades across a cold river which is depicted as being up to his waist whilst carrying a toddler and encourages the other 3 children to do the same.
Does he get them to all hold hands? No. He's too busy carrying his posh trainers to worry about one of his children being swept to their death in icy cold water.
To make matter worse, the picture displaying this horrific act of 'parenting' also includes a 'panty-shot' of one of the children. Not content with encouraging dangerous behaviour in parents the authors also pander to the worst kind of pervert as well.
The tale continues with the man dragging his children through 'thick oozy mud', 'a deep dark forest' which they blindly stumble and trip through. Again mr Dad doesn't bother to hold their hands or keep them together, then despite being repeatedly informed that 'it's a beautiful day' he drags his young charges who are clad in shorts, skirts and a babygrow through a swirling whirling snowstorm and then into a cave.
Not content with trying to drown them, give them pnemonia (& yes, I know I've spelt it wrong but I'm in mid rant with no time to spell check), lose them in the woods and muddy their shoes the dickhead leads them into a narrow gloomy cave!
Once in the cave they find the very bear they've been hunting and does the man have a plan? Does he ******** (Expletive deleted)!
They run back through the cave, the snow, the forest, the mud, the river and the field. The pictures for this sequence are very telling. The dad is always leading the charge away from the bear, obviously happy to sacrifice his kids to save his own skin, half the time he's handed his toddler over to one of the other kids to carry (as if they weren't slowed enough by all the hazards), then when they get home he runs upsatirs without bothering to lock the front door and has to send his kids back to lock it & hold the bear off. Then, door locked, he drags all his kids upstairs and into bed. At this point they decide that they're never going on a bear hunt again.
Now if it were me, bearing in mind the odd landscape that surrounds the house, the random weather conditions and that he was a man looking after 4 young kids (who may or may not have hayfever) and that he had no weapons or plan, I think the decision to not go on a bear hunt woul dhave come right at the beginning of the book.
A better guide for parents and kids would have gone like this:
'We're going on a bear hunt'
'No we're bloody not, it's dangerous and stupid and we haven't got any antihistamine'.
Perhaps a tale like that wouldn't have sold quite as many copies but think of the live sthat would have been saved if in the 21 years since this book were first published someone would have had the good sense to point out that bear-hunting is wrong, taking kids along is irresponsible and it's just not clever.
So by all means, by this sick filth, get a copy with a game or cd or dvd, do what you want but please, after you read it to your offspring give them a slap if they suggest actually going on a bear hunt. I know slapping kids is frowned upon these days but better a tearful child than a court appearance in which you have to explain away yet another mauling.
Thank you for listening...
'We're going on a bear hunt, We're going to catch a big one. What a beautiful day!
We're not scared.; These are the opening lines to Michael Rosen (author) and Helen Oxenbury (illustrator) We're going on a bear hunt book which has all the children in my nurserys attention.
The story follows a family as they go on a bear hunt through mud 'squelch squerch squelch squerch', grass 'swishy swashy swishy swashy', snowstorm 'whoo, whoo' to name but a few before finding the bear and racing back home they way have come to the safety of their bed and vowing 'we're not going on a bear hunt again'. This book has a great rhythme to it and the children love to shout out the noises and we have our own special actions to go with the story which gets them all involved.
The pictures are good and show they family on their journey these pictures are good for discussion as well as linking to the story.
The book we have at nursery is a paperback copy which is available on amazon for around £2.50 ours come with a cd which the children now have on their 'storyphones' which are like mp3 headphones. they enjoy listening to the story but I think they enjoy it being read to them more as we can go at our pace and do the actions as we go. The nursery is for 2-5 year olds and all children enjoy and get involved in the story so would recommend for all young children.
I also write on other review sites under the same name.
One of my clients bought my son We're Going on a Bear Hunt book and DVD as a Christmas present for the Christmas just gone.
The book came in the stiff board sleeve with a circular window cut out, displayed through the window was the DVD. The outside of the sleeve featured some of the pictures from the book. The sleeve was quickly discarded as being unimportant in favour of the book. I had never bothered buying this book as with years of repeatedly covering this book with the children of my clients, I knew it off by heart and had gone through the rhyme with my children time and again. I was surprised when they enjoyed it with the book equally as much as when we'd set up a pretend river, mud, forest etc and re-enacted the story ourselves. My children enjoy looking at the pictures as we read through the book. The pictures are half in black and white and half in colour, this matches perfectly with the progression of the story.
A family set off "on a bear hunt" and encounter various obstacles to overcome on the way. Each obstacle is taken on and overcome. In the end they find a bear and have to run home, past the obstacles again, before the bear can catch them. The plot isn't really the main entertainment in the book.
The language is simple but effective, the book is full of repeating patterns, allowing children to join in quickly with the poetry of the book. It also develops language as you can start to leave bits for your children to fill in. Each verse is basically the same with just the obstacle to overcome changing and the sounds that were made overcoming them. The last two pages of the book are different but still easy to pick up. We use this book often at work to develop language in children, it's a great learning tool, the children don't realise this they're too bust enjoying themselves.
We're Going on a Bear Hunt is a great book that entertaining and educational. I've never met a child that hasn't enjoyed it.
We're going on a bear hunt is a very well known story that is known around the world and is written by a British author Michael Rosen (previously poet laureate) He has written many books and poems but is probably best known for this story.
We're going on a bear hunt has previously been a topic at my son's school and consequently each class had a project to do a huge picture for each part of the journey - these being - grass, river, mud, forest, snowstorm and a cave and these are now placed lovingly in order on the wall in the school hall for all to see.
Back to the book though, my children used to love this book when they were toddlers and on me writing this review we have just watched Michael Rosen act the story out on YouTube and we were all in fits of giggle and joining in with all the actions.
The story follows a family obviously going on an adventure to look for a bear.
This story is a very active and involving story to read for the children. On every page there is some sort of action they need to do or a certain sound or way to speak, for example, they squelch through the mud, they splash through the river, they stumble, trip through the forest, they tiptoe through the dark cave and so on.
On each stage there are a couple of sentences that are repetitive so the children learn this easily and can join in:
'We're going on a bear hunt,
We're going to catch a big one,
What a beautiful day
We're not scared'
Followed by what they come across, this is then a challenge -
'We can't go over it, we can't go under it, we have to go through it'
There are so many opportunity to perform out different ways to say each sentence, such as being brave and bold - 'not scared' and being quiet and timid 'tiptoe'. The way words are used such as squelch and splash give great depth to the feeling about the story and children love making these sounds.
The illustrations by Helen Oxenbury are lovely and this book although a few years old now will stand the test of time for more decades to come and no doubt my children will be reading it to their children.
I definitely recommend this book for even the youngest of children just becoming interested in books and I understand there is now a pop up version which will make it even more interesting.
This is currently available from Amazon at £2.89
This book, in my opinion, is one which all parents, at some point, should read to their children. The gorgeous pictures and loving family nature of the characters is delightfully warm and gentle. I was read this as a child and as an adult and carer I read it and repeat it to the children I work with and often get asked to repeat it to them. You can use funny face and hand movements when repeating it to make it more desiarable and easier for children to follow with out the pictures.
The idea, firstly, of going on a bear hunt with children is perfect childhood adventure and I have often found the children I work with running around the garden shouting "a sandstorm! a swirly wirly sandstorm!" and are turning around in circles laughing and joking. At bedtime its perfect to send them off to sleep and you know they will have wonderful and adventureous dreams. When I eventually have children of my own I intend on taking them on a bear hunt, with a picnic, a camera and searching for signs, all thanks to this book. For the perfect solution when waiting for something, or a great way to set up a whole days worth of fun. I love this book.
I use to work in a nursery and read this book nearly everyday to my boys and girls, who loved it, I now read it to my own children who love it too.
My five year old son also likes to play it when we go on trips to the park and knows it word for word, he likes to pretend he is squelching through the mud and battling his way through a snow storm i think this a great bedtime story for any child its very exciting and beautifully illustrated I've not met one child who hasn't enjoyed having this story read to them it also gets the child involved in the book which is good, children like to feel they are part of the story and like to get involved I think this would be a fantastic present for any child as it is brilliant and I can bet the adult reading it to will love it just as much as the child if not more
The story is about a family taking a day out and decide to go a bear hunt where they come across some little problems along their way, when finally they find a bear and have to battle their way home it is a very exciting and fun story,
"We're going on a bear hunt ... we're going to catch a big one!"
This is a great book and my 7 year old son agrees. It is a favourite with schools as well, which is where he was originally introduced to the story. You can get involved sounding out the different actions as you join the family on their adventure. For example they go through a river SPLASH SPLOSH SPLASH SPLOSH. Thus encouraging children to use their imagination and be creative. It is one of those stories that you can make up simple actions to as well.
It is a great book for children learning to read as the print is quite large, the language easy to understand, and the story not too long. The book also has a lot of repetition which allows children to become more involved through familiarisation. My son knows it almost word for word and when we are going out we often sing the story together. The illustrations are classic and follow the story well which is brilliant as it always raises questions and added interest.
The is one of my three year old daughters favourite books as the story is great and there is so much play to be had when reading it.There is also fun actions to do too.Its a fabulous book and one that I enjoy too.I would recomend you buy this.
I really love this book although it can be a bit scary for littlies. My son (who is just 3) can almost recite the whole book now and is often to be heard saying swishy swashy swishy swashy! The brilliant Michael Rosen was always a favourite of mine as a child and this book has a lovely rhythm to it. It follows a family going on a pretend bear hunt through the long grass, the dark forest and across the water. Eventually they find the bear in his cave and, scared, they run home back the way they came. There is some great repetition in the book which helps fix the language in the child's mind. The family run through the house and hide in the bed but the bear follows them home! The book has beautiful illustrations but the story can cause smaller children to become somewhat scared of their teddy bears at bedtime. This is a lovely book to read to a child, although saying swishy swashy swishy swashy out loud is a bit of a tongue twister!
this is a fab fab book for children to have a go reading along with the cd that comes with it, I bought this for christmas for my three year old and he is already addicted and I already know it word for word. the rhythmic tell tale style of book is so easy to read and grabs the attention of your little one especially if you do the voices and faces alongside the cd, the illustrations are beautiful and comes in a lovely gift boxed set ideal for a xmas present or a birthday present to little uns class mates, i would have no problem recommending this book to anyone buying for a young child , smiles and quiet time are a must at bedtime and this is a perfect addition to your little ones favourite book case and no doubt you will be going on a bear hunt bear hunt bear hunt lol