Photo Credit: Beth L.

As a parent and educator, one of of the items that has always made me happy with Disney is the ability to put snippets of learning into everything. Even their programing for toddlers has been top notch. When my oldest was little, we used to watch Playhouse Disney. We’re talking long before Disney Junior when Clay, not Ooh and Aah, was the host of the morning programing.

Do you remember Bear, Tutter, Pip, Pop, Ojo, Treelo, Luna, Ray, Grandma Flutter, Shadow, and friends? Let me help you take a trip down memory lane:

Back in the day, we would wake up before 7:00 each morning to see Bear welcome us to the Big Blue House. We would sing with Bear and Luna at the close of each show. NHL and I would dance to the Bear Cha Cha Cha, What’s in the Mail Today, Clean Up the House, and other classic Bear songs. We looked forward to looking for Shadow. Of course, the adults always wondered about her slightly strange tales. We wondered what funny things Pip and Pop would be up to next.

Bear in the Big Blue house was first produced from 1994-1997 by The Jim Henson Company (the Muppet qualities of the characters are quite evident). In 2001, the Bear series was sold to The Walt Disney Company. There were 117 episodes of Bear made over the years and each was filled with lots of information and lessons for young children.

We enjoyed Bear in the Big Blue House so much that we bought many of the DVDs. Some of our collection is pictured above. What I really liked about each of the DVDs was the little “Bear Benefits” noted on the bottom left corner. This little tidbit helped parents to recognize the items that were being discussed within each DVD.

Photo Credit: Beth L.

Examples of “Bear Benefits”:

Dance Party:

  • Encourages Movement
  • Self-Confidence
  • Individuality

Shapes, Sounds & Colors With Bear:

  • Develops Pattern Recognition
  • Color Matching
  • Self-Exploration

Potty Time With Bear:

  • Reinforces Independence
  • Basic Bathroom Skills & Activities
  • Pride in Accomplishment

Party Time With Bear:

  • Encourages Friendship
  • Self-Expression
  • Sharing

Bear takes time to tackle topics like the seasons, cleaning, storytelling, going to bed, the senses, heroes, going to the doctor, holidays, and more. Each DVD is filled with opportunities to learn, to develop social skills, and to explore with your child. They are a great starting point for more activities. In the future, I plan on writing about some extension ideas to do with your toddlers and preschoolers.

Do you have a favorite Bear in the Big Blue House memory? If you do, I would love to hear about it.

Contributed by: Beth L. (NDM#183) Beth is the DDL Education Blogger. She is also the creator of The Angel Forever.

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