1st & 2nd Grade Books > The Bear and the piano

The Bear and the piano

Text & Illustrations: David Litchfield / Translation: Kifah Abdulhalim / Publisher: Sharbel Elias

One day, a young bear stumbles upon something he has never seen before in the forest. As time passes, he teaches himself how to play the strange instrument, and eventually the beautiful sounds are heard by a father and son who are picnicking in the woods. The bear goes with them on an incredible journey to New York, where his piano playing makes him a huge star. He has fame, fortune and all the music in the world, but he misses the friends and family he has left behind. A moving tale of exploration and belonging from an exciting debut author-illustrator.

Family Activities

This is a beautiful book that deals with many topics and values: perseverance and determination; talent and the magic of music; Self-discovery and fulfilment of dreams; true friendship; nostalgia.


What is my dream? How do I achieve it, and who would support me? The bear takes us along with him on his journey to achieve his dreams, from the forest to the city, to discover the world and become a famous pianist, but he misses his family and misses his friends in the forest, and wonders if they have forgotten him, so he takes us back with him to the forest.

This is a beautiful book that deals with many topics and values: perseverance and determination; talent and the magic of music; Self-discovery and fulfilment of dreams; true friendship; nostalgia.

The story invites us to have a dialogue with our children about their abilities, preferences, dreams and how to achieve them. It also encourages us to convince them that nothing stands in the way of achieving any dream if there is will and perseverance, and that true family and true friends are those who encourage them, support them, and rejoice at their success.

We invite you to encourage your children and accompany them in discovering their inclinations and encourage them to experiment and discover and break the barrier of fear.

Having a dialogue about the characters' feelings, desires, and thoughts enhances children's socio-emotional abilities and allows them a deeper understanding of the text.

Family Activities

  • Let’s talk:
  • • About feelings: We follow the written text and drawings, accompanying the bear on his journey from the forest to the city, and talking about his feelings and thoughts, as well as the feelings of friends and family. We can talk about feelings of loneliness, longing, anxiety, pride, a sense of ability and self-fulfilment as well. Enriching our child's dictionary so that they can be aware of their feelings and express them while reflecting these feelings through their behaviour.
  • • About perseverance and realization of dreams: After many attempts and for a long period of time, the bear was able to play successfully. With our children, we can share a goal that we have persevered for and achieved, and we can ask them what goal or dream they would like to achieve as well. We then plan together how they can do so.
  • • About their preferences, talents, and abilities: The bear discovered his inclinations and talent for playing. We can talk with our children about their inclinations and abilities and ask them about the things they like and can do. We can support and accompany them to discover them and emphasize them.
  • Let’s communicate:
  • • We can enrich the experience of our children, and together, we can watch a musical or theatrical performance and talk about it.
  • Let’s enrich our language:
  • • The story is rich in beautiful and new linguistic vocabulary, such as: aspire; issued; overflowing with happiness; shivering. We can explain these words to our children while reading, and we can talk about them afterwards as well.
  • Let’s have fun together:
  • • The great Arab musician and composer Omar Khairat succeeded in achieving fame by composing many songs. We can search the web for his songs, and we can listen to them with our children and have fun.
  • Let’s explore:
  • • With our children, we can search for people who have achieved their dreams (researchers, artists, athletes...). We can explore their childhoods and listen to interviews with them.
  • Enjoy your reading!

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