99/100 We’re Going on a Bearhunt

I watched the animation of this famous children’s classic story on television over Christmas.


It’s been written down by Michael Rosen and illustrated by Helen Oxenbury. I say “written down” rather than “written”, because, as Michael Rosen says himself, it is a traditional children’s rhyme.

Here’s a fascinating article from “The Guardian” newspaper about how the book came to be.

And here’s an official video from the walker books website of Michael Rosen performing it.

WARNING; If found this version of the video by going to www.walker.co.uk. If you look for the video on youtube, you will find a link to something called jointhebearhunt. When I clicked on it, my internet security software blocked it as a “dangerous site”, so I back-arrowed in a hurry. 

I’ve used the story before, with Early Years classes long before I’d ever read the book as I knew the traditional rhyme from somewhere else. I’d gather the children at one end of the space, and we’d start;

We’re going on a bear hunt

We’re going to catch a big one

I’m not scared  (my version didn’t have “what a beautiful day”)

…… oh-oh….

and then you add your obstacle….

We can’t go over it, we can’t go over it, we can’t through it, we’ve got to go through it.

….. off you go, with actions and sound effects…. until you get to the other side

All you do is repeat this, until you find the bear. The trick now is to prevent the children from running, screaming, back to where they came from! You are supposed to hurry back through all the obstacles, in reverse order, with the actions and sound effects, until you get safely home.

These days the children all know the story… which makes it perfect for turning it into a narration with percussion sound effects. They will happily choose instrumental sounds for grass, trees, mud, the river, and maybe one group doing Michael Rosen’s wonderful “dadoomp, dadoomp” footsteps in between each episode. Once you’ve got everything organised and working well, make sure you record it as the children will enjoy watching and listening to themselves.


This entry was posted in Class Teaching, Composition, Early Years, Lessons that have happened and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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