Monday, April 2, 2012

Kids Books A to Z: B is for Berenstain

I know I did the Berenstain Bears for last year's challenge. But considering that Jan Berenstain just passed away this past February, it feels right to bring them up again.

Stan and Jan Berenstain gave generations of parents, teachers and children excellent literature that taught both adults and children about life's lessons. Their characters rang true. Their stories were entertaining. And some of the social issues they faced decades ago are still applicable today.

Sister and Brother Bear often got themselves into scrapes and had to find their way back out again. Their parents showed that no matter what, they were loved. Some of their earlier books were even early readers that were published with the Dr. Seuss collection of Beginner Books.

In the later years, their son Mike worked with them, eager to carry on the tradition in which he had grown up. It will be interesting to see if he attempts to carry on the series without them.

These are a few of my personal favorites. Click on a book cover to learn more about it.

The Berenstain Bears and the Messy Room

*Raising my hand* Yes, this is me. I was the kid with the messy room. And when my sister and I shared a bedroom and playroom, we often also fought over who was going to clean up which part. Most siblings can relate to this book!

The Berenstain Bears and Too Much Junk Food

Papa Bear, Brother and Sister have been eating way too much junk food. They're starting to grow out, instead of up. Mama decides to take matters into her own hands, taking away the junk food and pushing more healthy alternatives and exercise. This book is an annual favorite when doing my health and nutrition unit.

The Berenstain Bears Think of Those in Need

Mama Bear teaches her family a good lesson when she makes them go through their closets. They have to get rid of things that they no longer use, to give to those less fortunate. This is a lesson that even adults could stand to remember.

The Berenstain Bears and the Trouble With Friends

Sister Bear has a tendency to be bossy. She gets a taste of her own medicine when Lizzy Bruin dishes out the bossiness in her direction. They learn how to compromise, which is an important skill in friendships.

This is just a small sampling of the dozens of picture books created by this dynamic duo. Which ones were your favorites?


  1. Great Kid's book recommendations!

    Look forward to your challenge posts...

    --Damyanti, Co-host A to Z Challenge April 2012

    Twitter: @AprilA2Z

  2. These were some of my most favorite books as a little girl and I've passed them down to my own children. Losing a wonderful talent like Jan Berenstain was sad!

  3. My 8 year old is a big Berenstain fan - and me too!

  4. The Berenstain Bears! Loved them. I don't remember any titles, but I recall reading (or watching) them going to the dentist. I think it helped relax me somewhat when it came time for my dentist visit.

  5. I forgot all about them. I loved the Berenstain Bears! Thanks for the wonderful reminder of this terrific series.

  6. I still love the Berestain Bears! I miss the cartoon!

  7. My oldest son is 14 and we still have Berenstain Bears books in the house for sentimental value. Good thing my 2 year old granddaughter came along to put the books to use again.