children’s books

Fun Bus Activities #1: Bus Books for Kids

Ride the Bus with Books and Stories

The Saturday Morning Lego Club at our local library is riding the bus, with bus books for kids and other fun bus activities. Hop on with us!


There are some wonderful bus books for kids. Have you and your child shared, “Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus” by Mo Willems? This silly story is loved by kids who also often sit in the driver’s seat of any vehicle and pretend to drive. Adults think the pigeon sounds exactly like kids who are whining, pleading, negotiating and using other strategies to get their way. In any case, the pictures show the end of the story and kids figure it out pretty quickly to get the joke.

transportation books for kids

In “The Bus Ride,” by Marianne Dubuc, a little girl is taking the bus by herself to grandmother’s house. Unfortunately, not that many kids will be able to have the same experience of going alone but the bus is a fact of life for many of us. The bus ride turns into quite an adventure. Do you and your child ever take the bus? As you travel along, imagine some adventures of your own.

books about buses for kids

Or how about a bus ride on a dinosaur, like “Gus, The Dinosaur Bus,” by Julia Liu. With a bus as big as the dinosaur, there are some pretty big issues, but what a wonderful solution in this story.

books about buses for kids

The Magic School Bus is always going on wild adventures and taking Miss Frizzle and her class. They explore from outer space to inside bodies, encounter tiny bats and enormous dinosaurs, travel under the ocean and deep in the jungle. Kids can hitch a ride anytime and anywhere. Many of these books are available as TV shows and videos as well, but they don’t come with the advantage of a lap and somebody who can listen to questions. Especially questions that drive adults batty.

bus books for kids

Another famous bus is #2857. The book, “Rosa’s Bus: The Ride to Civil Rights” by Jo S. Kittinger is more appropriate for older kids. A defining moment in our history, recent events are showing that we need to connect with each other and evaluate our own sense of fairness. A story in a book can make it easier to have discussions with children.

books about buses

Stay tuned for some more fun bus activities for kids. Are there some other books and stories about buses your child likes?

Children’s Books About the Olympics and Medals for Reading

importance of reading to kidsOne way to get in the spirit of the Games is to share children’s books about the Olympics and win a medal for reading-well, listening to adults read.

Kids ask questions and while we watch the Games, they will want to know why. There are lots of books for older kids, but not many for the preschool crowd.

children's books about the OlympicsG is for Gold Medal: An Olympics Alphabet has 2 sections of text for each letter. One part is shorter, rhyming text for younger listeners and the other part is more detailed paragraphs for more advanced readers. There’s lots of information in the text and in the illustrations.
children's books about the OlympicsOlympig by Victoria Jamieson is quite unexpected. Boomer, the pig, enters many of the events at the Olympics. His performance doesn’t match his expectations and he keeps losing. He keeps trying though. After several losses, his discouragement mounts and he quits in frustration. His mother isn’t embarrassed; she’s proud of him for trying. Boomer tries again and this time has a much different reaction even if it’s the same result.

children's books about the OlympicsOne of the children’s books about the Olympics with lots of answers and pictures is no longer in print but you might be able to find it at the library. B.G. Hennessy uses simple text in most of the book, Olympics, such as “Runners are running. Jumpers are jumping. Throwers are throwing. Swimmers are swimming laps.” Unfortunately, it’s not an easy book to find.

Whether you read these particular books or not, isn’t important. What matters is reading. Does your child have an interest in a particular sport or activity? Look for a book about that to share with your child. Following is a previous post about having your very own Reading Olympics:

One of the most powerful activities that you can do at home to help develop your child’s kindergarten readiness is to read books and share stories.  How about a Reading Olympics? Each day set aside a few minutes to either read to your child or tell a story. To earn a gold medal, read 3 times every day.  A silver medal is two books or stories and a bronze would be one book a day.

To make a medal, a juice can lid is just about the right size. Trace around it on some paper and let your child use paint or crayons to color it. Sometimes grownup hands need to help with the cutting. You can decide if there’s a medal for each day that you read, or just one for the week.

children's books about the Olympics

Reading encourages all kinds of brain connections for using language and thinking. Children who have been read to at home will have an astonishing total of about 5000 books by the time they start school. That sounds impossible but 3 books a day is more than one thousand in a year. Just think of how those few minutes a day can add up to a tremendous amount of brain stimulation for a child. Can you and your child have some gold-medal fun and learning?

Space Activities #6: Children’s Space Books

Children’s space books are almost as numerous as the stars in the sky! Space is a really popular theme for children’s books.

children's space booksThere are wonderful picture books about space with amazing photographs and illustrations. National Geographic Little Kids First Big Book of Space by Catherine Hughes and David Aguilar is one of these. It answers basic questions kids have about space so we don’t need to have all the answers. The book is divided into chapters that are relevant for kids. The first one is Looking Up From Earth. The next is Earth’s Neighborhood, followed by Earth’s Other Neighbors and Far, Far Away. The last section is on Exploring Space. Who knows what discoveries will happen in our children’s lifetime? The page on gravity invites kids to jump 5 times in a row to show gravity works every time.

children's space booksNot written by Dr Seuss himself, There’s No Place Like Space by Tish Rabe and Aristides Ruiz, features the Cat in the Hat. Familiar rhyming text takes kids “off to have fun. We’ll visit the planets, the stars, and the sun!” Wonder if the Cat in the Hat has packed any Green Eggs and Ham in case he gets hungry in space?


children's space booksJoey and Jet in Space, text and pictures by James Yang, is a simple story with only a few words but there’s lots to explore. Almost like a Richard Scary book, rockets and spaceships come in a tremendous variety of shapes and colors. Joey not only goes on a journey to space, he’s on the lookout for his pet. Of course, kids would take along their pet.

children's space booksSam Garton’s Otter character also takes along her pet, Teddy, in Otter In Space. Otter’s trip starts out with a visit to a museum where she sees “old paintings, made before crayons were invented.” But her discoveries do not end there. Just like parents, Otter Keeper won’t buy her everything she wants in the gift shop. With some imagination and creativity, she solves her quest to travel to outer space.

children's space booksOf course, any pile of children’s space books needs one for blasting off. On the Launch Pad: A Counting Book about Rockets,  by Michael Dahl does just that. After hearing it a few times, kids will be able to ‘read’ this by themselves.

Any out-of-this-world adventures with books for your child?

Transportation Play Activities #1: Transportation Books for Kids

Children have all different kinds of interests. We can support kids by finding books they like. Here are some great transportation books for kids. One of the favorite transportation books for kids of a whole range of ages is Richard Scarry’s Cars and Trucks and Things That Go. Did you know this was published in … Continue reading Transportation Play Activities #1: Transportation Books for Kids

Bubble Activities #7:  Children’s Books about Bubbles

Would it surprise you to know there are some wonderful children’s stories and books about bubbles? And not just the kind in the bathtub. The Bubble Factory by Tomie de Paola tells the story of a girl and boy, twins, who visit the factory where their grandpa used to work. What would workers in a … Continue reading Bubble Activities #7:  Children’s Books about Bubbles

Children’s Books for Chinese New Year

There are many wonderful children’s books for Chinese New Year with bright colors and exciting pictures. Whether this is a tradition in your family or not, many kids will want to know more about this celebration. Many communities will have special events and kids will have questions about what is happening. Books are a great … Continue reading Children’s Books for Chinese New Year