Another classic book from Bill Martin, Jr. and Eric Carle in Polar Bear, Polar Bear, What Do You Hear?

With the same format and style as Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? but this time, children are introduced to sounds of new animals – roaring of a lion, snarling of a leopard, the snorting of a hippopotamus and more!

“Polar Bear, Polar Bear, what do you hear?”

“I hear a lion roaring in my ear.” Children quickly learn the simple rhyme and are able to read along with the story.

Again, Eric Carle’s strong and bright illustrations are memorable, which also makes this a great introduction to young children to some not-so-common animals!

Tips for Parents

Depending on your child’s age, you might like to let them take part in the story-telling!

  • These are not your average farmyard animals, so each has a quite distinctive noise! The boa contrictor’s hiss is easy but you might want to practice the peacock’s yelp or the bellowing of the walrus!
  • Talk about each animal – its size, its color, where you might find it.
  • The sing-song like rhythm is contagious – children can’t help but to join in!
  • The final page is a great summary of all the animals. Ask your child to point to each animal as you read it, or at random. When old enough, your child will be able to recite all of the animals as if reading it themselves!
  • Once your child is familiar
    with the book, they might be able to guess what animal is coming on the next page. “Zebra, Zebra, What do you hear?” “I hear a ……” Pause before you finish the sentence. You’ll be surprized how catchy and memorable the rhythm is.

    (You can give your child a clue by taking a small peek on the following page if you need to show some of the picture or color of the next animal! Or, just read out the noise!)

Bill Martin, Jr

Born one of five brothers in Kansas in 1916, Bill Martin Jr became affectionately known as “America’s favorite children’s author”.

He was a teacher, a principal, and also worked at a publishing company before he became a full-time author. He wrote more than 300 children’s books over 60 years. Some of his books continued to be published even after his death in 2004.


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