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Today is Thanksgiving. I hope all my readers have a warm and safe holiday. I will also encourage everyone, whether you celebrate Thanksgiving or not, to take a moment to think about the blessings you have in your life. Better yet, take a few moments to write down 1 or 2 things that you are thankful for today. It can be as simple as not having to deal with the holiday traffic, or being able to enjoy a warm meal. Be thankful.

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Bear Says Thanks is not specifically about Thanksgiving. But it is a good book about being thankful. Karma Wilson has an amazing ability to write a rhyming story that doesn’t come out cheesy or overdone, and I think Jane Chapman’s illustrations are lovely and warm.

Besides being a good book about learning to say thanks, it also has a lesson about being thankful for things beyond what is material. Bear is thankful that all of his friends bring food and drink to share, but he feels bad that he doesn’t have anything to share himself. His friends reassure him that he DOES have something to share, his stories. What a good lesson for kids to learn. We often can share things that can’t be seen or touched, and in this materialistic world we can forget about that. Sometimes it is stories, or singing ability, a comforting presence, or time.

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When I read this to my boys I have them say THANKS out loud, every time it pops up. It makes it fun, and helps them listen closely to when they need to say it. I for one could use more practice in this area.

Like I mentioned before, this is not a seasonal book. I do not put this one away after the Thanksgiving holiday. It doesn’t even mention Thanksgiving. It is just a book about saying thank you and being thankful. I leave it out because we need practice with this, year round, at my house.

This is just one of a series of books about Bear and his friends. They are all rhyming books and fun reads. We haven’t read all the Bear books by Wilson and Chapman yet, but a few others we’ve enjoyed are Bear Snores On and Bear Feels Sick.