Polar Bear Over There: An Environmentally-Conscious Holiday Tradition

I have a new project to share with you! Polar Bear Over There is a new, environmentally-conscious holiday tradition.

I made up Polar Bear Over There in November 2017 as a game to play with my children during the Christmas season. I was looking for a fun alternative to Elf on the Shelf that was less focused on the commercial aspects of the holiday season. I couldn’t find one that was right for us — so I invented it instead! Each night, I hid our Polar Bear ornament along with a handwritten note on how the kids could help save its habitat. Each morning, the kids enthusiastically found it, and we would read and act on the Polar Bear’s note together.

This year, the kids began asking about the Polar Bear again right after Halloween, so I began preparing the Polar Bear notes ahead of time. As I did, I decided I should share Polar Bear Over There with a wider audience — including you!

You can find everything you need to play Polar Bear Over There at the project webpage, which is http://PolarBearOverThere.com, including a printable Polar Bear to use with the game. Here’s how to play:

  1. Each night, the adults hide the Polar Bear with a note telling kids how they can help to save the Polar Bear’s habitat.
  2. Each morning, the kid(s) find the Polar Bear and read the note.
  3. Adults can discuss the note with the kid(s), or they can assist with an activity related to the note.
  4. Repeat each morning until you’re done! This can be done as a lead-up to Christmas or another holiday, as a month of climate-consciousness, or whatever works for you.

We’ve had a lot of fun with our Polar Bear this year. Here are some of the Polar Bear’s antics this December:


Polar Bear Over There doesn’t need to be a December thing — you can play it anytime of the year. Check out the website and play along! You can post your photos with #PolarBearOverThere on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, or any other social network.

You can also get Polar Bear t-shirts and other products! Profits from these will go to a non-profit working to combat climate change.

I hope you like my new project! Please share it if you like it, and I’d love it if you let me know if you decide to play.


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