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Stan Berenstain, Jan Berenstain - Author

About the Author

Stan and Jan Berenstain started drawing together when they met in Miss Sweeny’s drawing class on the first day of art school at Philadelphia Museum School of Industrial Art (now called The University of the Arts) in 1941.

They both lived in West Philadelphia but on different sides of the line that dictated school assignments, or they might have met much earlier. Both Stan and Jan enjoyed school. They liked to read. They like sports, but, most of all, they loved to draw.

When they met on the first day of art school, it was their drawings of classical plaster casts that attracted their interest in each other. A warm friendship developed from their first meeting.

They spent after-school time together at art museums and Philadelphia Orchestra concerts where they sat in the “peanut gallery” – where most young people sat. They also attended Hedgerow Theater whose repertory consisted of the plays of George Bernard Shaw and William Shakespeare.

Their even closer friendship was interrupted by World War II when Stan went into the Army. He was sent to engineering school at the University of Maine, served in the field artillery, and was chosen during a hospital stay to be medical artist at an Army plastic surgery center in Indiana.

While Stan was in the Army, Jan served on the civilian front doing engineering drawing for military contractors and as a riveter in an aircraft factory.

Stan had become interested in cartooning and sold some cartoons to the Saturday Review of Literature during his last weeks in the Army. Jan also enjoyed doing cartoons and, after they married, joined Stan in submitting cartoons to magazines. It took them about a year of weekly submissions before they broke into the “big time”. But they soon became major contributors to such popular magazines as The Saturday Evening Post and Collier’s and shortly thereafter became cover artists for Collier’s.

Their entry into the book business was prompted by a letter from an editor at a New York publishing house who enjoyed their magazine cartoons. He asked if they would like to do a book.

Having just become parents of a baby boy named Leo, they decided to do a book about raising a baby. It was illustrated with their cartoons. It was called Berenstains’ Baby Book. It proved successful and led to a number of books of family humor.

Raising two sons – Michael had joined Leo – who liked books, especially books by Dr. Seuss, Stan and Jan submitted a children’s book to Dr. Seuss who had become the editor of Beginner Books, a Division of Random House.

They introduced the Bear family “who lived down a sunny dirt road deep in Bear Country” in their first children’s book. It was called The Big Honey Hunt and was published in 1962. They did a number of easy-to-read books under Dr. Seuss’s editorship. They started their own line of books about everyday family experiences in 1974. The Berenstain Bears New Baby proved successful and led to a series of such books which are still being created. They have dealt with dozens of subjects in their family series. Just when the Berenstains think they’ve run out of subjects about the challenges of everyday family life, they think of five or six more.

The Berenstains continue to do easy-to-read books as well because they believe that encouraging children to read is one of the most important things you can do for them.

Younger son, Mike, who had become a successful writer/illustrator of children’s books on his own, joined his parents in Berenstain Bear Country many years ago and has not only worked on dozens of Berenstain Bears books, he is also the exclusive designer and illustrator of a series of large picture books, the first of which was The Berenstain Bears Save Christmas. The Berenstain Bears TV show on PBS runs throughout the US and in many other countries. Stan and Jan were always interested in theater, especially the musical theater. Their Children’s musical The Berenstain Bears On Stage opened at the Rose Theater in Omaha and will tour theaters throughout the country. The Berenstain Bears are also featured in many children's museum exhibits. Stan passed away in November, 2005 at the age of 82.  Jan & Mike continue to write and illustrate Berenstain Bears books in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, a beautiful region that looks for all the world like Berenstain Bear Country.

Featured books by Stan Berenstain, Jan Berenstain

Other books by Stan Berenstain, Jan Berenstain

Old Hat New Hat

Old Hat New Hat

Author: Stan Berenstain, Jan Berenstain Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 04/09/2020

In OLD HAT NEW HAT the first few pages carry the reader well into the plot simply by the repetition of three words. Gradually new words are introduced, the pace is quickened and suddenly even the earliest or slowest reader has 'read a book'. Bright and early books help even the youngest children get ready to read. Simple stories and basic concepts are humorously presented in rhythm and rhyme. Pictures that fully explain the text help even babies make the important connection between word and meaning. It's never too early to find out that 'Learning to read is fun'.

The Berenstain Bears Very Beary Stories 3 Books in 1

The Berenstain Bears Very Beary Stories 3 Books in 1

Author: Stan Berenstain, Jan Berenstain, Mike Berenstain Format: Hardback Release Date: 31/07/2020

Now in a durable hardcover edition, this collection of Level 1 I Can Read stories from the Berenstain Bears Living Lights library is sure to delight emergent readers, as well as parents and caregivers looking for trusted characters and stories that teach important life lessons. As they practice early reading skills, children will gain invaluable lessons about sharing, caring, and helping others, all while having a joyful time in Bear Country. Together for the first time, The Berenstain Bears Very Beary Stories includes the following popular stories: The Berenstain Bears Play a Fair Game The Berenstain Bears Respect Each Other The Berenstain Bears Get the Job Done In The Berenstain Bears Play a Fair Game, Sister and Brother Bear love soccer and their team the Rockets. But when their rivals, the Steamrollers, prove that they'll do anything to win, soccer is no fun. As they read-along, children will discover how peacemakers are the true winners. In The Berenstain Bears Respect Each Other, Gramps and Gran go on a picnic with Mama and Papa Bear and the cubs. As the family searches high and low for the perfect picnic spot, they end up learning a few things about good manners and respecting others. In The Berenstain Bears Get the Job Done, it's clean-up day at the Bear home, and Brother, Sister, and Honey Bear are asked to clean out their playhouse. But soon the fun of sweeping and dusting wears off and playing baseball sounds much more fun. Readers will discover the value of working together to accomplish big jobs.

Halloween is Sweet

Halloween is Sweet

Author: Stan Berenstain, Jan Berenstain Format: Board book Release Date: 14/07/2020

The Berenstain Bears and the Rowdy Crowd An Early Reader Chapter Book

The Berenstain Bears and the Rowdy Crowd An Early Reader Chapter Book

Author: Stan Berenstain, Jan Berenstain, Mike Berenstain Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 03/03/2020

Something's up with Brother Bear. He's talking tough, he's walking tough, and he has a new hobby: shooting hoops with Too-Tall and his trouble-making team. And basketball isn't the only new pastime Brother takes up when he falls in the wrong crowd. Will Brother realize who his true friends are before it's too late? The Berenstain Bears and the Rowdy Crowd is an engaging early reader chapter book that features black and white illustrations alongside entertaining text and relatable characters. As read-alone or read-aloud, it helps kids connect plot to chapter structure and will have teachers and librarians asking for more. And as part of the beloved Living Lights series, it's the perfect segue for emerging readers and fans of the brand. When kids graduate from picture books to chapter books, it's a great moment. Mama, Papa, Brother, Sister, and Honey will captivate readers age 6-10 who are ready to take the next step in their reading comprehension.

The Berenstain Bears and the Rowdy Crowd An Early Reader Chapter Book

The Berenstain Bears and the Rowdy Crowd An Early Reader Chapter Book

Author: Stan Berenstain, Jan Berenstain, Mike Berenstain Format: Hardback Release Date: 03/03/2020

Something's up with Brother Bear. He's talking tough, he's walking tough, and he has a new hobby: shooting hoops with Too-Tall and his trouble-making team. And basketball isn't the only new pastime Brother takes up when he falls in the wrong crowd. Will Brother realize who his true friends are before it's too late? The Berenstain Bears and the Rowdy Crowd is an engaging early reader chapter book that features black and white illustrations alongside entertaining text and relatable characters. As read-alone or read-aloud, it helps kids connect plot to chapter structure and will have teachers and librarians asking for more. And as part of the beloved Living Lights series, it's the perfect segue for emerging readers and fans of the brand. When kids graduate from picture books to chapter books, it's a great moment. Mama, Papa, Brother, Sister, and Honey will captivate readers age 6-10 who are ready to take the next step in their reading comprehension.

The Berenstain Bears' Nature Rescue An Early Reader Chapter Book

The Berenstain Bears' Nature Rescue An Early Reader Chapter Book

Author: Stan Berenstain, Jan Berenstain, Mike Berenstain Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 03/03/2020

Save the birds! Save the trees! That's what the cubs are saying around Bear Country. If Squire Grizzly gets his way and cuts down the trees in Birder's Woods, the yellow popinjays will have nowhere to rest. They could disappear forever. It's up to the cubs to save this important part of nature before it's too late! The Berenstain Bears' Nature Rescue is an engaging early reader chapter book that features black and white illustrations alongside entertaining text and relatable characters. As read-alone or read-aloud, it helps kids connect plot to chapter structure and will have teachers and librarians asking for more. And as part of the beloved Living Lights series, it's the perfect segue for emerging readers and fans of the brand. When kids graduate from picture books to chapter books, it's a great moment. Mama, Papa, Brother, Sister, and Honey will captivate readers ages 6-10 who are ready to take the next step in their reading comprehension.

The Berenstain Bears' Epic Dog Show An Early Reader Chapter Book

The Berenstain Bears' Epic Dog Show An Early Reader Chapter Book

Author: Stan Berenstain, Jan Berenstain, Mike Berenstain Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 23/07/2019

A super-duper dog show is Brother and Sister Bear's greatest idea yet. What could possibly go wrong? Find out what happens when Too-Tall and the gang decide to crash the big show. This engaging early reader chapter book features all your favorite Berenstain Bear family and friends. Dogs large and small will do amazing tricks. Dr. Hairball, the vet, will judge. The Arfo Dog Biscuit Company has even agreed to give out prizes to each and every dog. It's sure to be the best dog show ever ... or is it? The Berenstain Bears' Epic Dog Show is a funny and entertaining animal adventure featuring the Berenstain Bears family and friends you know and love. As a read-alone or read-aloud, this early reader chapter book helps kids connect plot to chapter structure, taking their love of books and reading to the next level. And, as part of the beloved Living Lights: A Faith Story series, it's the perfect segue for emerging readers and fans of the brand. The Berenstain Bears' Epic Dog Show: Helps early readers ages 6-10 graduate from following along with picture books to reading chapter books on their own Is the perfect stepping stone for readers who are ready to take the next important step in their reading comprehension Includes all the Berenstain Bears family and friends who have been beloved by parents, grandparents, children, and grandchildren for decades Features kid-friendly text and easy-to-read, easy-to-remember Scripture verses Teaches valuable life lessons about always believing in yourself and never underestimating the power of an underdog Is a fun, new book in the popular Zonderkidz Living Lights: A Faith Story series, which has sold over 8 million copies since 2008

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