Recycled Robot Craft inspired by The Ricky Ricotta Books by Dav Pilkey

robot craft for kids I love books.  More than my love of books is my love of getting KIDS to love books, especially my own kid. Before I share how we made this super rad robot inspired by Dav Pilkey’s Ricky Ricotta Mighty Robot series of books, I need to tell you that this post was sponsored by Scholastic.  I am so glad that the publisher sent me these books because my son loved them. LOVED. So much that we decided to make a shiny recycled robot craft that reminded us of the shiny full color pages of these awesome books. The whole book is beautiful and I really think those silky full color pages made reading the book even more enjoyable for my son.

Gather your materials. You will need some recycled materials. I save anything that looks interesting so I had some ribbon spools, plastic lids, card board, crusher lids, etc… you will also need metallic paint, a hot glue gun, and something to protect the surfaces you are working on.

ricky ricotta mighty robot supplies

Start by spray painting some of the recycled materials. When you read the books you will see that the Robot is really shiny so my son and I decided we needed to get really shiny silver paint. You might want gloves for this too. My nails are still silver.ricky ricotta silver robot

When dry gather all your pieces and plug in the hot glue gun ( ours is a low temp one) robotricky ricottaand let your robot builder go nuts!robot craft

He has inherited my love ( need?) of symmetry. At one point he was asking me where I think he should put something and when I suggested something asymmetrical he responded with ” Um I don’t think so, that would wreck the symmetry! ” OK then.

I think the robot turned out to be pretty awesome, well worth the days and days of silver spray painted hands ( seriously use gloves!)



About The Books!


Ricky Ricotta Series by Dav Pilkey illustrated by Dan Santat

These early chapter books are about a little mouse Ricky who is not the most popular mouse. He gets picked on at school until he ends up saving Robot’s life and the two of them become best friends! You’d think that with a giant robot as a best buddy a little mouse might let it go to his head. Ricky is a good mouse through and through and as the series continues he and Robot continue to save Squeakyville from all sorts of evil.

When my son and I snuggled up in bed to read the first book I did most of the reading. The books themselves are below my son’s reading level ( The series is listed as DRA 20 )  but reading levels are not the only things parents need to consider. Do you always read at your maximum reading ability? I can guarantee that I do not. Reading for pleasure isn’t always challenging. We flew through the first book and he begged me to read the next. I read it then left him the other two books and told him he could stay up as long as he was reading. Less than half an hour later he came downstairs to ask me if we had the 5th book! He’d read the other two books immediately. My son is a great reader but he doesn’t LOVE reading fiction, so his desire to read more more more was huge. I was THRILLED.dav pilkey bo

When I asked him what he loved about these books he said the illustrations by Dan Santat were amazing, the cool features like comics and flip book in the middle , and how quick they were for him to read. Patience is not something most 7 year old boys have in spades so I get that. The illustrations really are awesome but I want to let you know that the whole book is full color. The book is really beautiful , seriously every page feels special. I have already been telling friends in real life about how these are great early chapter books for reluctant ( and not reluctant) readers and I am thrilled to share it here too.

Visit the Ricky Ricotta Official Site
Learn more about author Dav Pilkey
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As stated above this post was sponsored by Scholastic.



A to Z Mysteries by Ron Roy

A-Z Mysteries by Ron RoyI love reading with my son and I am super excited to be doing his bedtime routine again now that my daughter doesn’t nurse to sleep . We have been devouring this series since picking it up at the library last Saturday.  The power of a book series is that they instantaneously encourage your child to keep reading. When you introduce a series to your child try to have 3 installments on hand so that you can really get invested in it while the novelty of new characters is strong. That is the other thing that really connects children to series , even if the books are short the reader gets connected to the characters over the course of a few books. I will be reviewing other series in future posts as well. If you have a series you love please let me know in comments .



What stands out about A to Z Mysteries by Ron Roy for me is that they are actually suspenseful. Reading with my son is one of my favorite things to do but when they book is a page turner it’s even better. The mysteries that the three main characters Dink, Josh and Ruth Rose solve are not figured out in the first two pages. There are plot twists , subtle clues along the way and just enough illustrations to help new independent readers but not too many to make them feel like it’s a picture book. We also love the map of Green Lawn the fictional setting of the books, not only does it serve to get a better picture of where the children are going in the stories, it also helps immerse the reader in the character’s reality and connect that much more. The characters in these books are good kids, they playfully tease each other but their friendship and care for each other is apparent in every book. The kids do get in over their heads sometimes but those situations are not glorified and give me the chance to talk to my son about why that wouldn’t be a safe choice. They always do the right thing even if they are on the edge from time to time.A-Z Mysteries


What I enjoy the most about these books is that my son adores them and can read them without any help. The only thing is that if he reads it alone he then has to catch me up at bedtime on what he’s read independently because I don’t want to miss any clues either. The chapters all end with suspense and I have yet to have a night when my son hasn’t begged me to keep reading. Music to my ears!


Here is a quick plot summary of the first 3 books in the series.


The Absent Author  is probably my favorite  book in the series ( so far) because there are so many clues about the mysteriously absent author that the kids are trying to track down. I love the process they go through and my son was predicting and changing his prediction about who was behind the mystery the whole time. We read this one in one night .

Bald Bandit

The Bald Bandit This was the first book in the series that we read and even though it’s the 2nd book in the A-Z order I didn’t feel like we were missing anything or having to fill in any gaps. This book was really edge of your seat suspenseful and my son’s wide eyes while reading it was photo worthy. The kids are working to help gather info about a bank robber but do they really know who they are working with? A few pages in and I could tell this series was going to be gobbled up at our house. I was right.

The Canary Caper

The Canary Caper There is a pet snatcher in Green Lawn and the kids work together to solve the mystery . I loved how complex this story was. It really made my son think and put clues together. It also has a feisty old lady in it who is my new idol!


Do you have a favorite series you read with your kids? What was your favorite as a child? Leave a comment below and let us know.