CM Month Date,
1996. Vol. II, Number 24

image Goldilocks and the Three Bears.

Lilly Barnes. Illustrated by Lindsay Grater.
Toronto: Somerville House, 1995. 32pp, cloth, $16.95.
(Part of "The Storyclothes Series." Includes Goldilocks's bow and headband, bear paws, bear ears, and one-page guide for adults.)
ISBN: 0-895897-42-4.

Subject Heading:

Preschool - kindergarten / Ages 3 - 5.
Review by Carol Carver.



Once upon a time, there were three bears who lived in a house in the forest. There was Great Big Bear, Middle-Sized Bear, and Little Tiny Bear. One morning, Great Big Bear made porridge for their breakfast. Middle-Sized Bear set the table. And Little Tiny Bear ladled the porridge into a great big bowl, a middle-sized bowl, and a little tiny bowl. Great Big Bear said, "This porridge is too hot." Middle-Sized Bear said "Let's go for a walk while the porridge cools down." Little Tiny Bear said, "Yes, yes!" and wiggled his nose and his paws. (He always did that when he was excited.)

image Goldilocks and the Three Bears is the second in the series by Barnes and Grater (it follows the well-received Story of the Three Little Pigs). The "Storyclothes Series" consists of classic stories accompanied by a dress-up box and simple washable costume pieces; the goal is to encourage dramatization while having fun with books.

The book is small (13 x 17 cm.), just right for little fingers to hold. The plot follows the traditional Three Bears folk tale with a few alterations: Papa, Mama, and Baby Bear are now Great Big, Middle-Sized, and Little Tiny Bear, with no specific genders; Goldilocks's curiosity is given as the reason for her breaking-and-entering the Bears' house, and the parents' beds are "too high at the top" and "too high at the bottom." The story has only a few sentences on each page but still contains plenty of dialogue, which lends itself well to play-acting.


The cover has a theatrical look which matches the box design. Illustrations are generally colourful and attractive -- with the exception of the picture of Goldilocks (who sports red hair in this version) eating porridge. The three bears are especially appealing. One clever touch is showing them munching the blueberries that Goldilocks left behind breakfast.

The kit also includes a headband with a gold lamé bow (although in the book Goldilocks has a blue one), a set of furry brown paws, and matching brown ears. All props are washable. Sharing headpieces in a primary classroom could be a problem if there is a concern about the spread of lice. Use in a home situation might be more appropriate.

An enclosed note to adults gives suggestions on using and expanding on the material.

Recommended for family home use or as a gift item.

Carol Carver is a Primary Teacher at École Dieppe School in Winnipeg, Manitoba.

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Copyright © 1996 the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.

Published by
The Manitoba Library Association
ISSN 1201-9364