Goldilocks and the Three Bears
Retold by Jim Aylesworth
Illustrated by Barbara McClintock (Scholastic, 2003)
Aylesworth, Jim, reteller. Goldilocks and the Three Bears. Illustrated by Barbara McClintock. Scholastic, $15.95. ISBN: 0-439-39545-3.
- After examining several retellings (with
illustrations) of "The Three Bears" story, discuss the similarities and
differences. Use these tales to outline or layout the story grammar
(that is the basic tale). Discuss how each author's inclusion of
details about characters or scenes change the tale in some way. Some
retellers have created a fractured version of the tale -- changing some
of the basic scenes in the story and have put the story and its
characters in a more contemporary setting.
- Brett, Jan. Goldilocks and the Three Bears. Illustrated by Jan Brett. Dodd, 1987. -- traditional
- Catalano, Dominic. Santa and the Three Bears.
Illustrated by Dominic Catalano. Boyds Mills, 2003. -- a fractured
version to read after children are totally familiar with traditional
- Galdone, Paul. The Three Bears. Illustrated by Paul Galdone. Clarion, 1979. -- traditional
- Gorbachev, Valeri. Goldilocks and the Three Bears. North-South Books, 2003.-- traditional
- Jacobs, Joseph. "The Three Bears." In Tomie dePaola's Favorite Nursery Tales. Edited and illustrated by Tomie dePaola. Putnam, 1986.-- traditional
- Marshall, James, reteller. Goldilocks and the Three Bears. Illustrated by James Marshall. Dial, 1988. -- traditional (with a twist or two)
- Rockwell, Ann. Three Bears & 15 Other Stories. Illustrated by Anne Rockwell. Crowell, 1975; HarperTrophy, 1984.
- Spowart, Robin. The Three Bears. Illustrated by Robin Spowart. Knopf, 1987. -- traditional
- Stanley, Diane. Goldie and the Three Bears. Illustrated by Diane Stanley. HarperCollins, 2003 -- a contemporary and fractured setting
- Stevens, Janet. Goldilocks and the Three Bears. Illustrated by Janet Stevens. Holiday, 1986. -- traditional
- Make a three-dimensional map of the bears' home setting, the woods, Goldilock's home, etc.
- Script "The Three Bears" story for a readers theater
presentation or a live dramatic production; or present a shadow play
with cutout characters, using an overhead platform as the stage.
Barrett, Judi. Animals Should Definitely Not Act Like People. illustrated by Ron Barrett. Atheneum, 1980.
- Discuss whether the three bears should be wearing clothes or not. in connection with this response read:
Barrett, Judi. Animals Should Definitely Not Wear Clothing. illustrated by Ron Barrett. Atheneum, 1974.
- Connect prose and poetry--
- Read the poem "The Bear with the Golden Hair" by Karla Kuskin. One source for the poem is Kuskin's poetry collection Dogs & Dragons, Trees & Dreams: A collection of Poems (Harper, 1980).
- Read Jane Yolen's The Three Bears Rhyme Book (Harcourt, 1987) and The Three Bears Holiday Rhyme Book (Harcourt, 1995). Both collections have delightful illustrations by Jane Dyer.
- Make a list titled "Books About Bears" or "Things We
Know About Bears" -- put your information on a large bear-shaped piece
of butcher paper.
- Tales - Using Goldilocks or the Three Bears as characters.
This is what comes of using familiar characters in new -- usually
humorous tales. After students are completely familiar with the
traditional tale (and the more traditional retellings) try these tales.
For more sophisticated readers:
- Ada, Alma Flor. Yours Truly, Goldilocks.
Illustrated by Leslie Tryon. Atheneum, 1998. -- Integrate the skill of
letter writing and correlate with the reading of other folktales whose
characters are also part of this story. You might also wish to use Dear
Peter Rabbit by Ada (Aladdin, 1997)
- Fearnley, Jan. Mr. Wolf and the Three Bears.
Harcourt, 2002. -- This tale was originally published in England by
Egmont Books in London. There is a web site associated with that
edition at www.hungry-wolf.com. Be sure to check out the recipes --
measurements will be in metric measure. Perhaps these recipes can help
stimulate the collection of other literary recipes (see the recipe in
Aylesworth book for "Mama Bear's Porridge Cookies" ) for a class
collection of recipes.
Comparing to the historical tale: The
timeless fairy tale is given a new perspective through Aylesworth's
witty text and McClintock's illustrations detailed pen and watercolor
illustrations. Although this tale is retold from classic fare for a
young audience, an earlier version of the story was somewhat different
from subsequent retellings. In 1837, a Robert Southey retold a story of
a small, wee bear, a middle-sized bear, and a great, huge bear. Southey
talked about a "little old woman" who came to the house and who "could
not have been a good honest old woman; for the first she looked in at
the window, and then she peeped in at the keyhole." the story ends
with: "The three bears never saw anything more of her." Joseph Cundall
deemed the old woman an unsatisfactory element in the tale, so when he
retold the tale in his Treasury of Pleasure Books for Young Children
(1850), an intruder was a little girl named Silver-Hair. It is reported
that he did that because there were so many other stories of old women.
Silver-Hair remains the name of the girl in many retellings even to
this day. In 1858, in Aunt Mavor's nursery Tales, the intruder is
caller "Silver -Locks." Joseph Jacobs, who retold the story in More
English Fairy Tales (1894) substituted a fox as the intruder. The first
use of the name Goldilocks seems to have been in Old Nursery Stories
and Rhymes, illustrated by John Hassall (1904) Elements from many of
these early versions remain to this day. Along the way, several
versions, the small, wee bear became Baby Bear, the middle-sized bear
became Mother Bear, and the great, huge bear became Father Bear or Papa
Comparing Illustrations: Barbara
McClintock's illustrations for Aylesworth's retelling are pen and
watercolor and bring to mind the early illustrations of Ralph
Caldecott, Sir John Tenniel or kate Greenaway. Various illustrators
have shown the bowls of porridge, the chairs, and the beds in different
ways, and the introductory portion of the story gives a variety of
information. Each of the beds in Rockwell's illustrations is covered
with a quilt, and the length of the bed clearly indicates its size.
compare the setting for each story and the depiction of the bears and
Goldilocks. nestled in a clump of trees, Anne Rockwell's bears live in
a stone house of sorts with a castle-style turret. Goldilocks visits a
rather modern-looking kitchen -- the stone has gas burners, and a bowl
of artificial fruit sits on a counter. Goldilocks sits in three
distinctly different chairs, one an overstuffed easy chair. In several
versions the chair for the Middle-sized (or Mama) Bear is an
overstuffed chair, while the other chairs are wooden chairs or rockers.
Compare the dialogue that takes place when the bears return and find
their belongings damaged. Some editions refer to the bears as Papa
Bear, Mama Bear, and Baby Bear, while others use Great Huge Bear (or
Big Bear), Middle-Sized Bear, and Wee Small Bear. he version
illustrated by Jan Brett shows some magnificent costuming on each of
the three bears, and the bowls, chairs, and beds are ornately appointed
with bear images and traditional Slavic designs. Steven's illustrations
present the bear family as quite ordinary. mama Bear is shown in a
dress, high heels, and pearl necklace. Papa Bear wears a plaid shirt
and pants with suspenders. And Baby Bear is dressed in overalls and
tennis shoes. The comparative sizes of the bears, bowls, chairs, and
beds are clearly depicted in the illustrations. Goldilocks is shown as
an ordinary schoolgirl in a simple pinafore.
- After reading Aylesworth's retelling of Goldilocks
discuss the information about the origin of the story of "The Three
Bears" and compare this retelling to the elements that might have been
included. Discuss how the book might have changed had a fox been in the
story, or an old woman, or Silver-Locks. which would have changed the
story the most? The least?
- Reread Goldilocks and the Three Bears by Jim
Aylesworth and look at the illustrations by Barbara McClintock in
relation to the points discussed above. Note the terms Aylesworth uses
to describe the characters, describe standard episodes etc. Discuss how
this version is similar to or different from other versions.
Back to Goldilocks and the Three Bears
Text for Classroom Connections section © 2003-2009 Sharron McElmeel @ McBookwords.
Portions of this text may have been published in earlier publications and are reprinted here with permission.