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The Bear Snores On

I love building lessons around children's literature and finding ways that I can incorporate folk songs with them. Some of the books I choose are based on a song, such as "She'll Be Comin' Round the Mountain" that I sing to the students, and others are not based on a song, but I find ways to add instruments or incorporate a folk song on some of the page turns. It can be a great way to introduce a song because they get a lot of listening repetitions of the song and by the end of the story book, you can often invite them to join in and sing on the page turns.

Here is a great one for January when all we really want to do is hibernate until summer.

Bear Snores On - Hardcover
"Bear Snores On" - This book is fun on its own with a cute story and illustrations, but as always, music makes everything better!

Here are two different songs I like to use with this book depending on the grade level/concept we are working on. I simply sing the song on the page turns or every few page turns if I am running short on time.

Grizzly Bear is perfect for if you are preparing or practicing Loud/Soft in kindergarten:

Later in the lesson or on another day you could expand upon this song with rhythm visuals at the board.
This slide comes from my "Grizzly Bear" song file. Find it here.

"Frosty Weather" - You could use this song when preparing re or even practicing ta and tit.

Visuals for "Frosty Weather" can be found here.

I use the book to introduce the song. They get a lot of hearing of it that way. Before the book is over, I am inviting the students to sing with me on the page turns. Immediately after the book, we will play the singing game.Students join right in singing because they are already very familiar with the song.

Before you rush to Amazon, Ebay or West Music to purchase this book, you might see if your school library already owns it or if any of the primary teachers have it in their classroom library. They are often happy to let you borrow it for a short time if they are not using it that week, and they get really excited to find out that you are incorporating books into your lessons!

What is your favorite children's book to use in the music room in January? Let me know if the comments below!


  1. I love this!! We have had so many delays this past week, that I think I'm going to switch up Kindergarten and use this!!! :) Thanks Lindsay!

    1. So glad it was something you could use right away!

  2. I've used a lot of literature in my K and 1st classrooms. I build my programs around a book or folk tale in 1st grade ("Where the Wild Things Are", "Mortimer", "Wide-Mouthed Frog", etc.). In Kindergarten, I just use song stories by Iza Trapani when we have some extra time in class. Now I have some new ones to try. Thank you!

    1. I love all the ones you mentioned. What do you do with "Where the Wild Things Are?"

    2. I actually turned it into a mini-musical by using songs from Music K-8 in strategic places. The classroom teachers taught poems that were also interspersed throughout and it was narrated by our principal with the book projected on a big screen. I was pretty pleased with how it turned out.

  3. I love using this book with 1st grade to talk about timbre- we add sound effects to the story and perform it as a "soundscape". We add vocal, instrumental, body percussion, and found sounds- the students are always so creative! I usually do "Grizzly Bear" in kindergarten (another favorite!) and we revisit the song and game to introduce the story :)