Baby Bear Sees Blue

"Baby Bear Sees Blue" by Ashley Wolff

There’s no better way to teach little ones their colors than with the whimsical, wonder-filled “Baby Bear Sees Blue” by Ashley Wolff.

Parent educators with the Washington School District have chosen the picture book as their February Baby Buzz Pick.

Each month the group selects a quality book for children birth to 5 years of age. A Baby Buzz review is featured in the second weekend issue of The Missourian.

The parent educators partner with The Missourian on the project, which was made possible by WINGS. Through a WINGS grant, parent educators purchase copies of each month’s Baby Buzz Pick to use in their visits with parents and children.

Washington Parents as Teachers recommend additional books monthly. That list is available on The Missourian’s website,

The following Baby Buzz review was written by Nancy Nagel, area literacy advocate.

“A mother bear guides her cub in discovering the world around him in this beautifully illustrated new children’s book. Mama Bear and Baby Bear engage in a give and take throughout the story as Baby Bear notices and interacts with his surroundings.

“As Baby Bear questions each experience, Mama Bear patiently identifies the object. First, the bright sun provides warmth, next, an oak leaf waves, then a blue jay sings. The color of each newly discovered object is highlighted and named as Mama and Baby Bear continue their walk through the woods. ‘Who tickled me, Mama?’ asks Baby Bear. ‘That is a butterfly,’ Mama says. Baby Bear sees orange.

“Ashley Wolff’s illustrations carry the story as much as the words. The illustrations are made by printing linoleum blocks in black on paper and then hand coloring them with watercolor.

“The simple text with its predictable pattern of question and answer makes for a comforting book parent and child can read together. The story concludes as the mother bear and cub hurry back home ahead of a storm.

“ ‘Then Baby Bear closes his eyes and sees nothing but deep, soft, black.’

“Who wouldn’t want to snuggle up with their favorite child for a nap after reading that?

“This picture book provides an enriching experience for your young child to learn colors. Children learn colors first by grouping objects of the same color together. Then they are able to point out a color you name. Finally, they are able to name the color of a given object.

“Playing ‘I Spy’ games around your house or yard is a fun way to support your child’s color-naming development. It also would be fun in the spring or fall to take a nature walk, then make a collage of leaves, flowers, nuts, and twigs, and name the colors of your nature treasures.”

Other parent educators favorites this month are “Moonlight” by Helen V. Griffith, “No Sleep” by Kate Feiffer, “Z is for Moose” by Kelly Bingham, “The Monster Returns” by Peter McCarty and “Another Brother” by Matthew Cordell.