Sunday, March 13, 2011

Panda Bear, Panda Bear, What Do You See by Bill Martin Jr.

Title: Panda Bear, Panda Bear, What Do You See?
Author: Bill Martin Jr.
Illustrator: Eric Carle
Copyright: 2003, Henry Holt and Company, LLC.
Grade Level:
infants - children in preschool or 1st grade
Genre: Fiction
Theme: Endangered species, animals.

In this beautifully written and illustrated children's book, there are ten endangered animals presented in rhyming text. Different animals in this story answer the question "What do you see?", and it repeats.

Pre-reading Activity:
Talk about the animals in the zoo. Ask the children what their dreams are and what they see in their dreams. Share in a big group. Talk about the two senses used in the book - sight and sound.

Post-reading Activity: Children can choose their favorite animals and create their own book, with their own illustrations. Also, children can make masks of their favorite animal from the story.

The first time I read Panda Bear, Panda Bear, What Do You See by Bill Martin Jr. I fell in love. It was such a great children's book, and I absolutely loved the illustrations in it. I have read this book numerous times to toddlers and preschoolers, and they love it. The funny thing is after a while they start to memorize the book and they speak the words along with me.

About the author:
Born in 1916, William Ivan Martin, also known as Bill Martin Jr. was one of America's favorite children's authors, who wrote for over sixty years. His name Ivan was inspired by his mother, whose name was Iva. Kids in school called him Billy, and always made fun of his middle name, but his name soon changed when he started college. One day when he was called into the registrars office he was asked what his middle name was since he forgot to provide it, and being too embarassed to say Ivan, so he told them he didn't have a middle name. The registrar office told him that he must be a junior then, and not knowing what that meant he agreed and therefore a Jr. was added to his name. 

Bill Martin Jr. was a Kansas native, who graduated with a teaching certificate from Emporia State University. He taught elementary school in Kansas and was an elementary school principal in Chicago. In 1961, he moved to New York City where he developed the literature-based reading programs (Sounds of Language and The Instant Reader). Also, he wrote over three hundren books for children. Another book he wrote was Chicka Chicka Boom Boom, which is also a wonderful book for children of all ages. Unfortunately, Bill Martin Jr. passed away in 2004.

About the Illustrator:
Eric Carle has illustrated more than seventy books for children. Due to his beautiful illustrations, Eric Carle has been awarded numerous awards. His latest one was Laura Ingalls Wilder Award in 2003, awarded by the Association for Library Service to Children.

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