BFIAR week 3 - Ask Mr. Bear

Trying to play catch-up with our BFIAR posts...we're about to start week 5, so I'm not quite there yet!

First of all, thank you all so, so, so much for your kind words in response to Friday's post. It's just good to know I'm not the only homeschool mom out there who just feels a little insecure and overwhelmed sometimes.

Since you're all golden in the advice department...anyone out there have advice for homeschooling a preschooler when you have a baby that's too old to sleep in your arms and too young to entertain herself (and takes short naps). Suggestions?

Week 3 was my favorite week so far. Row with me?


During our third week, we read the book Ask Mr. Bear. It is a delightful story, about a little boy who is trying to find a birthday gift for his mother. After asking all the farm animals for their advice (with no success), he finally "asks Mr. Bear" for advice...and finds a gift that any mother would love!

On one of our first days with this book, I took advantage of Sister Stinky's love of imaginative play, and we threw ourselves an "unbirthday party." The BFIAR book suggests talking about and celebrating "unbirthdays" (i.e. a day that is not your birthday), just like in Alice in Wonderland. We watched the clip of this fun song from the movie, and then proceeded to have a party of our own!

Before Five in a Row suggests baking a cake or cupcakes to celebrate, but I was tired and Sister Nugget was taking one of her naps-of-unpredictable-lengths, so we settled for playing with our pretend birthday cake.

Since she enjoyed our color matching game last week so much, we did some more color matching this week. BFIAR suggests using these beautiful illustrations to talk about pastel colors. I think I mentioned to her that these are called "pastel colors," but we mainly focused on talking about the difference between lighter and darker shades of color.

This activity was also inspired by a suggestion from Before Five in a Row. The curriculum suggests using hand or finger puppets to put on a show. Instead of our usual felt board figures, we just made our laminated figures into these little stand-up puppets. Sister Stinky loved it! It was so fun to act out the story together.

She continued to show an interest in pre-writing activities during our third week. I pulled out some laminated worksheets that I had made and put aside awhile back. I got these from The Helpful Garden's pre-writing activities.

She showed some interest in learning the letter "T," since it's in her name. Aren't a child's first letters the cutest?!

Also following another suggestion from the curriculum (there were so many good ones for this week!) we looked through some books we had about trees and the woods. The book on the right is one of those pre-reading gems that has no words so that the child can come up with the story herself. I could tell we've been reading a lot of stories with a repeating rhythm, because Sister Stinky's version consisted of repeating, "In the woods there is [fill in the blank]" or "And in the woods there is [fill in the blank]." I remember being fascinated by this kind of book before I started reading, and it's fun to see her hitting that stage, too. She definitely is beginning to enjoy "reading" her books to us!

I switched things up for our math work a bit. We continued to use our bead bars (I HIGHLY recommend these!!!), but I also decided to incorporate our DIY sandpaper numbers. We continued to work on counting, and on number recognition. (In fact, whenever she would confuse her numbers, I'd have her count the beads to verify which number was on the card.)

I know that I already shared this picture, but it was definitely one of my favorites from our third week of preschool. Just a sunny, cold, cozy afternoon spent with my little love. :-)

Have any of you read Ask Mr. Bear with your child? What did you enjoy about it?


  1. I have not read it but the whole BFIAR curriculum sounds great!


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