Making Connections with the Berenstain Bears

This playful introduction to the strategy of making connections will enhance reading comprehension. Using guided activities set in The Berenstain Bears exhibit, students will discover self-to-exhibit connections between their own background knowledge and the things they see and do in Bear Country. Students will also browse Berenstain Bears books and share self-to-text connections.

Lesson extensions for before or after your visit

The following activities are designed for your class to enjoy before or after your museum visit. Familiarizing students with the lesson concepts can enrich your museum experience.

Making connections

Learning is about making connections between what is already known and new information. Students can learn to make connections of all kinds, even before they learn to make connections in their reading.

  • Introduce the term “making connections” as a thinking strategy.
  • Incorporate the idea of making connections into classroom routines. Encourage students to share their personal connections with the ideas of other classmates during discussions or at sharing times.
  • Demonstrate how to make connections to books for your students by “thinking aloud” about your personal connections to the text you read.
  • Provide ways for students to represent their connections as a response to hearing books read aloud; consider movement, painting, drawing, discussion, or other activities.

Resources

Read the book Reading With Meaning, Teaching Comprehension in the Primary Grades by Debbie Miller for more ideas about “making connections” as a reading comprehension strategy.