Ah, those grey winter days filled with such fresh, beautiful snow, so crisp and cold, that sometimes…. you just want to turn around and go back to bed. Sound familiar? It certainly does to the bear, who takes these cold months as an opportunity to rest up, skipping the winter altogether. Those brilliant bears! While bears use hibernation as a way to conserve energy when there isn’t much food around, we’ve been inspired to stay cozy with these fun and educational activities you can do indoors, with a nod to our hibernating friend, the bear.
Sweet Dreams is a lovely lullaby that will lull any bear (or child) into a peaceful slumber. The music video stars Baby Bear and Mama Bear in a sweet exchange before bed. This cozy song can fill any bear cave with lots of love and warm feelings, even if it is freezing cold outside. Watch the video.
Once you wake from your sweet dreams, you might be looking for something to do with your little paws. This torn paper craft activity is a great craft that any little bear can get into – just get out some sheets of paper and tear them into pieces! Then with a little help from a bigger parental bear, the pieces of paper are put together to form Mama and Baby Bear from Sweet Dreams. Check out the step-by-step instructions to make this simple craft.
Cozy days can be great learning opportunities, too! And your own cuddly teddy bear can help. Follow along with our song My Teddy Bear to review simple counting and parts of the body. Here are some ideas for how to use the song for more learning and fun from our How To Teach series:
- Have your child sit in your lap and pretend they are your teddy bear. Follow along with the song, counting the different parts of the body on your child. When we sing “I love my teddy bear!” give your child a big hug.
- Bring all your teddy bears together in a group and explore what makes them special. What are their names? Are they different colors?
- Play a game of Teddy Bear Says! It’s just like Simon Says, but make it teddy bear!
Once your little bear is familiar with the song, they’ll be ready for a sing along with Tobee and Caitie! Caitie will show you some fun moves you can do as you sing, so join in and follow along. Watch the Sing Along WIth Tobee episode.
Keep the Teddy Bear fun going with our Teddy Bear Coloring Page. Print it out, get the crayons, and let your little bear cub color a teddy bear of their own. You can prompt them to color the different parts of the body we learned about in the song My Teddy Bear: the paws, the ears, the eyes, the nose, the arms, and the legs. When you are done, you can follow along with the song on your new picture! Download the Teddy Bear Coloring Page.
Slightly older cubs might enjoy drawing a bear of their own! In this episode of How To Draw, we break down how to draw a bear step-by-step, so it’s a fun and simple way to learn how to draw this amazing animal. TIP: Pause the video along the way to give your cub plenty of time to draw their bear. Watch the episode, and get drawing!
All the hibernating bears out there now how to get ready for a long winter’s nap, but what about our own little bear cubs? In this episode of Caitie’s Classroom, Caitie explores all the things we should do to before going to bed, and helps little ones establish a routine that gets them all ready for sleep. We sing the song Sweet Dreams, read a bedtime story about a family of bears, Tobee calls the classroom looking for his lost teddy bear – he can’t fall asleep without it! Come on into the classroom and watch the episode.
Do bears wear pajamas when they hibernate? …Hard to tell! But it sure does make a cozy day at home feel more comfortable when we wear them. We have a great matching activity to try on those cozy days when getting out of those pjs might be more trouble than it’s worth. This activity was featured in the Caitie’s Classroom episode Bedtime Routine, so you can follow along with Caitie in the classroom and do the activity together! Get the free printable!
This craft was also featured in the Caitie’s Classroom episode, Bedtime Routine. Those cozy cubs can always use a few extra craft ideas to keep them busy when you want to stay inside. This craft uses simple materials that you probably already have at home, like a paper plate, paint and construction paper. It’s a great way to hibernate for all our little bear cubs out there. Get the step-by-step instructions.
Eventually, all the bears must wake from their slumber. The music video for this sweet song, Are You Sleeping, Baby Bear?, stars The Rabbit and they try to wake their friend Baby Bear to come out and play. One day soon, the days will get warmer and brighter, and we’ll all wake up out of hibernation to come and play. In the meantime, here are some ideas for how to use the song at home for more learning and fun from our How To Teach series.
- Roleplay this song with your little cub. Have them pretend to sleep and then wake them up with the song, but use their name in the song instead of singing ‘baby bear’.
- Try roleplaying this song with dolls, or your teddy bear!
- Play a hide and seek game, hiding teddy bears or pictures of bears around the room. As you search for the bears, sing the line from the song, “come and play!”
The next time you want to shut the blinds and go back to bed, try one of these activities and hibernate at home, just like our fantastic friend, the bear. Those bears might just have the right idea, and with these cozy ideas, we can join them in our own kind of hibernation and that is fun and filled with learning. Happy hibernating!
Watch all the Hibernation At Home videos mentioned in this list plus more with our Hibernation At Home YouTube playlist!