Bear Says Thanks



Warm animal story celebrates gratitude and friendship.

What parents need to know

Educational value

Kids learn what kinds of homes different woodland animals have, from Bear's "lair" to the Mole and Gopher's underground tunnels.

Positive messages

And the story so teaches the value of gratitude, sharing with friends, giving generously, and politely saying thank you. When Bear is sad that he has no food to offer for the feast, Mouse tells him, "You don't need any food, you have stories to share!" -- a great message that don't always have to give things; you can give of yourself and your special talents.

Positive role models

Bear is a great model of gratitude as he thanks each woodland friend for bringing him food when his cupboard is bare, and for sharing a meal with him. Each animal is generous and upbeat, gives Bear a nice hug, appreciates him for being a good storyteller, and, like Bear, says thanks.

Violence & scariness
Not applicable
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Bear Says Thanks, the eighth book in the Bear series (Bear Snores On, Bear Stays Up, etc.), is a warm, gentle picture book that celebrates gratitude, friendship, and politely saying thanks when someone gives you something or does something for you. Bear is hungry and lonely in his cave, and one by one his friends bring him food treats. Bear says "Thanks" after each donation, and  and they all enjoy a big feast -- and together say a big "Thanks!" when it's over.

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What's the story?

It's autumn and Bear tucks himself into his cave, but then gets bored and misses his friends. He decides to make a feast and invite his friends, But his cupboard is bare. Just then his pal Mouse stops by with a huckleberry pie, and Bear says, \"Thanks!\" The Hare brings muffins, Badger brings fish, Gopher and Mole brig nuts, and so on till there's a big feast for the animal friend to share. Bear says \"Thanks\" after every contribution, and they all say \"Thanks\" at then end of the feast.

Is it any good?


BEAR SAYS THANKS is warm and positive and visually very appealing in its autumnal palette. Each animal has lots of personality, and they really convey how deep and meaningful their shared friendship is. It has a wonderful message about gratitude any day, but would be an especially good choice around the Thanksgiving holiday.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about why it's important to say "Thanks" or "Thank you." Why do you think parents and teachers want you to get in the habit of saying it?

  • What's fun about animal stories?

  • If you've read any other books in the Bear series, how do you think this one compares? Do you like it as much as the others you're read?

Book details

Author:Karma Wilson
Illustrator:Jane Chapman
Genre:Picture Book
Topics:Friendship, Holidays, Wild animals
Book type:Fiction
Publisher:McElderry Books
Publication date:September 9, 2012
Number of pages:40
Publisher's recommended age(s):3 - 8
Read aloud:3 - 8
Read alone:5 - 8
Available on:Paperback, Nook, Audiobook (unabridged), Hardback, iBooks, Kindle

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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