Review Blog

Jul 23 2015

The very noisy bear by Nick Bland

cover image

Scholastic, 2015. ISBN 9781743627853
(Age: 4+) Highly recommended. Bears, Noise, Musical instruments, Neighbours. When Bear is awakened one day during hibernation, he asks the sheep if perhaps they would tone down their noise, but instead is asked to stay and play. He is given a range of instruments to try but each has disastrous results, the bear making the most appalling noise and sometimes damaging the instrument. The animals try him with a set of drums, then a guitar, followed by a trumpet, until all the animals run away to avoid the noise. Eventually someone gives him a microphone and he sings with unexpected results.
The rhyming verses are wonderful to read out loud and will encourage the reader to predict what might happen next, causing lots of laughter at the antics of all the animals, and Bear's effect on them.
Bland uses the words with great effect, some of the noises are in large font, filling sections of the page encouraging the readers to be loud as well, following the bear's attempts at making music. Bland's illustrations will intrigue and delight the reader as they watch the bear make his way through the instruments given him, watching the animals' faces as they first are horrified at what the bear does, and then come to some appreciation of Bear's voice. Small images dot the pages giving another does of humour to those who spot them - the moose with its antenna horns, the zebra's stripes, the turtle who can hide in his shell, the violin playing sheep.
All is very funny and can initiate discussion about being good neighbours, or introduce a range of musical instruments, once the class has stopped laughing.
This is another in Nick Bland's series of books about Bear, starting with The very cranky bear in 2008.
Fran Knight

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