We have a bit of a Berenstain Bear love fest going on in this house recently, and although I strongly speculate that it has something to do with the book size and the ability to carry around a small stack of them at once, I was pleased to find a good holiday one to enjoy during this Christmas book countdown. From 1984, here is The Berenstain Bears Meet Santa Bear by Stan & Jan Berenstain.
This book follows in the typical Berenstain Bear book fashion with the main characters being Sister Bear and Brother Bear. The cubs get overly excited about what to ask for this year from Santa Bear and they eagerly make out their lists. Brother Bear, being older, is a big help bringing Sister Bear’s list down from a stack of pages to just one and Mama and Papa work to help teach the cubs about giving and not just asking. Oddly enough, the actual meeting Santa Bear is a minor part in the story and the important aspects are more the anticipation, the list-making, and the thoughtful processing of who Santa Bear is and how and why he does his job. It is rather a nice focus of the book helping Sister Bear think less materialistically and be thoughtful about providing gifts and joy to her parents on Christmas.
While I think the Berenstain Bear books are nice, I find their enjoyability by little kids so interesting. The books are very narrative, almost to the point of mundane, in their detailed descriptions of typical daily life for the Bears. And yet, this is often just the kind of storyline I see children gravitating towards again and again. There is something comforting in seeing a small reflection of things you have and will experience in life. The Berenstain’s really tapped into that mindset creating often very lesson-driven books that are still enjoyable and desired by little kids. Hopefully this Santa Bear one will make the rounds often enough to repair some of the damage recently caused by our semi-disastrous Santa visit!
I would love to know if there are any other Berenstain Bear obsessed kiddos out there. Having not been passionate about them as a kid, I am intrigued by my daughter’continual requesting of them. They are a solid family for sure and fun to have around in our daily life too!
Thanks for reading along. See you tomorrow as we continue our Christmas picture book adventure!