Notes from Storytime

Vroom! Vroom! Cars have wheels, the make great noises, and they are all around us. Here are some titles to roll away with as well as some suggestions to make the stories interactive. Reading with activities are a great way to strengthen pre-literacy skills and children of all ages can participate.

If I Built a Car by Chris Van Dusen: Jack makes some improvements to the standard car model including a swimming pool, a snack bar, and jet engines! (ages 4-7)
Tip: Ask fellow readers what they would include in their dream car. Then draw pictures of the crazy designs.

Rattletrap Car by Phyllis Root: On a hot day one family sets off for the lake, but their old car keeps losing parts. What will they do? (ages 2-5)
Tip: Each time the car breaks down ask readers if the car is stuck for good and what solutions might be found. Have them join in the sounds the car makes when it starts up again.

Toot Toot Beep Beep by Emma Garcia: Big, bright cars rush around with lots of noises! (ages 2-4) Tip: Grab some paint, paper, and a hot wheels car. Dip the car in the paint and drive it across the paper to make tracks. Add a print of the car by dipping and stamping the car in the paint and your picture will resemble those in the book.

The Wheels on the Race Car by Alex Zane: This is just like the song “the wheels on the bus” but with animals racing Nascar style. (ages 2-5) Tip: Go ahead and sing the words. After a few times your fellow readers will be singing along with you.

This is the Van that Dad Cleaned by Lisa Campbell Ernst: Dad’s minivan is squeaky clean at the beginning of this tale. Then he takes his three kids for a ride messy mishaps occur one by one. (ages 2-5) Tip: This story is similar to the rhyme “this is the house that Jack built”. Try tapping out a rhythm while you read. Young readers can tap along with you or point out the different objects in the illustrations as you list them.

The Life of a Car by Susan Steggall: Follow a car from the factory to the road to the garage and finally to the recycling plant. (ages 1-4) Tip: The paper collage pictures tell most of this story. Have your fellow readers tell you what is happening to the car on each page. They can use as many details as they want, and even make up characters. This way they can enjoy reading to you.

Create a hot rod to match your stories!

You will need:
one bath tissue tube
a hole punch
thick paper such as construction paper or cardstock
4 brass fastenersMarkers, paint, or stickers

1. Cut the tube in half lengthwise so it looks like the letter C when on end.
2. Cut 4 circles out of the paper about 1.5 to 2 inches in diameter
3. Decorate the tube and wheels
4. When everything is dry, punch a hole in the middle of each circle and 4 holes in the tube
5. Attach the wheels with the fasteners

Happy Driving!

- Miss Emily


  1. This is a great list Emily. Tried and true pictue books that boys and girls will love! LG

  2. I love the car craft. :-)


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