Create a Hibernating Bear Den

What you need:

  • A large box (about 3 feet by 3 feet)
  • Packing tape
  • Brown paint
  • Large paintbrush
  • Scissors
  • Blankets and pillows

What you do:

  1. Share a story with your child about bears and hibernation such as Time to Sleep by Denise Fleming or Bear Snores On by Karma Wilson. After reading about bears, discuss hibernation and see if they know any other animals that hibernate during the winter months.
  2. First, help your child seal the box with packing tape.
  3. Invite your child to help create the den by painting the outside of the big box. They can use a large paintbrush and brown paint to transform the box into a cave—encouraging their imagination!
  4. While the box cave is drying they can look for pillows and cozy blankets to place inside the cave along with having a nice snack to help them stay full, just like a bear does before hibernating. Bears love to eat nuts and berries before their long sleep, so a bowl of mixed nuts and cut berries might be in order!
  5. Help your child by cutting a large hole in the side of the box for them to use for getting in and out of their bear cave.
  6. Now your child can find the perfect spot to position their cave for hibernating. Encourage them to curl up inside and see if they're ready to hibernate!

Did you know:  Bears hibernate for up to six months of the year! While bears hibernate their heartbeat slows and their body temperature drops to 88 degrees. A bear's normal temperature is the same as humans: 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit!

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