“Freight Train” by Donald Crews is best reviewed by my son who loves it so much he “reads” it to us. This video was taken for grand parents far away but it was perfect for this post. Clearly proof of how many times we have read it, renewed it from the library and genuinely enjoy it as a family.
“My Truck is Stuck” by Kevin Lewis is a fun book full of great rhymes and funny illustrations from Daniel Kirk. The story is simple a truck is stuck and even though other vehicles come to help, nothing budges until a tow truck arrives. The best part is the cargo of bones in the truck are slowly stolen by hungry gophers while the others work to free the truck. It’s got a great message about helping people and the illustrations make me giggle, especially the guy in the moving van who is blowing bubbles. I have never understood that but it makes me laugh.
“Trucks Go” by Steve Light is a new find for us. I spotted this board book from across the library during preschool story time today. There were kids everywhere and I was not sure that I would get to it before someone else did. I kept my composure , didn’t have to elbow a single person and popped it in my bag. The minute of worry was worth it , what an awesome book! The illustrations are so beautiful that I would seriously consider framing every page. The book goes through different trucks ( garbage truck, cement mixer, fire engine etc..) and the sounds they make. My son was laughing and repeating the sounds while we read this at bedtime and enjoyed the water color illustrations almost as much as I did. Grab this one like I did.
“The Truck Book” by Harry McNaught is another favorite in our house, mostly because it has a forklift in it. There isn’t much of a story, instead it’s a collection of labeled illustrations. If your child is like mine and loves , no obsesses over things that move this is a fantastic book. I admit I get bored reading it even if my son doesn’t. To fight that boredom we play I spy and both of us are happy.
“The Mighty Street Sweeper” by Patrick Moore is a rare book, it’s rare because it is a story about self esteem clothed in a truck book. The street sweeper isn’t the biggest, the fastest or the most powerful truck but it’s still mighty and proud. I really like this book, we read it before nap and again before bed and I liked it even more the second time. The message about being happy with who you are is really touching . I liked that the book says that you don’t have to be the best at everything to still be proud of your hard work. My son really enjoyed this book as well and it was excited to read it again at bedtime.
- Gather your materials. You will need a piece of construction paper, some crayons, a marker, scissors, tape and tissue paper.
- Start by drawing a basic submarine.
- Hand it to your little sailor and have them color it to their hearts content!
- While they do that cut the tissue paper into small squares.
- Cut it out
- Fold in half and cut circles on the fold. I asked my son how many he wanted. Older kids can do this step independently.
- Flip over and add the tissue paper. Tape right over it all. I did this step, but handed my son some tape to tape some scrap paper and you’d think I gave him a huge bowl of ice cream he was so excited. So even though I was taping our project he was still participating.
- Pop it up in your window and let the sun shine through the portholes!
- Gather your materials. You will need some cereal boxes, and smaller boxes ( like mac and cheese, or cracker boxes), scissors, markers, and tape. You will need a box and a half for each building. Don’t forget your recycling truck!
- Start by talking with your child and deciding what to draw, I drew our buildings but if your child wants to , go for it! My son decided on a church, fire station and the aquarium. Make as many or as few buildings as you wish.
- Open up the cereal boxes and draw inside.
- Have your child color the buildings if you drew them.
- While they color, draw some roadway.
- Hand them the road way when they are done with the buildings and let them at it !
- Cut out the buildings and roadway.
- Tape store fronts to the full boxes.
Rocks and trees and butterflies
Rocks and trees and butterflies
Dirt and leaves and bugs!’
Don’t throw your junk in my backyard,
Don’t throw your junk in my backyard ,
my backyard’s full!
” The Whole Green World” by Tony Johnston is a celebration of the Earth and it’s beauty. The text is short enough to hold young children’s attention and the illustrations by Elisa Kleven are bright and so detailed you will fall in love! I think it’s important to teach our children to see the beauty of the Earth, especially when we are teaching them to conserve it!
“Machines At Work” by Byron Barton is a bold and bright book that is perfect for toddlers who are obsessed with construction vehicles. The text is brief but effective. My son loved this book as an infant and at 2 still enjoys reading it, aw well as counting the workers and trucks on each page.
“The Berenstain Bears and the Big Road Race” by Stan and Jan Berenstain shouldn’t be overlooked. I really enjoy this book but not as much as my son who has begged for it every day before nap this week. It’s a good story about being persistant and they sneak lots of learning into the rhyming text. Colors, opposites and more can be reinforced by this retelling of the classic tale of the tortoise and the hare.
“School Bus” by Donald Crews is the book for you if your child goes nuts for the big yellow buses! The reader tags along for a day in the life of a school bus from the depot in the morning , to school , across town and back. The book was also helpful when I was teaching the concepts of stop/ go and empty/ full.
“Truck Stuck” by Sallie Wolf was an awesome find. It immediately reminded me of ” One Duck Stuck ” by Phyllis Root and that is not a bad thing at all! The rhyming text is fun and the illustrations made me giggle, especially the Elvis impersonator in a pink Cadillac! My son was so impressed with this book, I was able to negotiate my reluctant eater to finish his lunch if I read it one more time . That speaks volumes!
These simple shape activities have been a favorite of my son for a while now, so it was only fitting to match it up with his other favorite thing- a garbage truck. I don’t know about your child but my son is nuts about these wonders of public sanitation. Luckily if we sleep in on garbage day there are hundreds of garbage truck videos on youtube. Did you know that garbage trucks in Japan play music, I know because I have seen them on youtube, many many times!
- Gather your materials. You will need some plain construction paper or cardboard ( such as a cereal box) , some green markers or paint, some black and brown construction paper, scissors and glue.
- Draw one large square, one small square and an obtuse triangle on your cardboard.
- Have your child color or paint the shapes green, point out the shapes and label them for your child. We used markers because we were taking a break from paint eating .. *Side note – all parents get frustrated with their kids at times, if you know your patience isn’t at your all time best, or even good take steps to make the craft or lesson less stressful for everyone involved. My son really wanted to make this before his dad got home so instead of getting frustrated at the paint eating, I offered him markers. It worked well for everyone and we had a peaceful time making the garbage truck.
- While they are coloring the shapes, cut out 3 large circles from the black paper.
- Cut out the truck shapes
- Grab the brown piece of construction paper and the glue!
- Add the large square, small one and triangle, so the triangle is only touching at the top.
- The glue for the wheels- you can add the glue as a guide for your child.
- Pop the wheels on and let dry.
” I Stink” by Kate and Jim McMullen was the bain of my existence in my Pre-K class, the kids loved this book and I really liked most of it, but there are some gross things in it like puppy poo, dirty diapers and kitty litter but we put all those things in the garbage so they are totally appropriate. Just know that they will also get a group of 4 and 5 year olds giggling and repeating the words for days on end. Overall though the book is effective and I own a well read copy. The garbage truck is sarcastic and rough, and the alphabet of garbage is creative.
“I Am A Garbage Truck” by Ace Landers is my son’s favorite toy right now, he kisses it good night and it’s the first thing he asks for when he gets up in the morning. The book itself is okay, the story is a little disjointed, when my husband read it to him for the first time he looked over at me in my son’s bed and said ” Am I reading this the right way? It seems like I should have started from the last page?” my son didn’t care, he loves the illustrations and the way the book is in the shape of a garbage truck. I like that it covers both garbage and recycling!