Transportation: Preschool Storytime

Books We Shared

Go! Go! Go! Stop! by Charise Mericle Harper reimagines traffic lights and gives them a story, about a traffic light who could only say “Go!” and who needed the help of another to say “Stop!”

In McToad Mows Tiny Island by Tom Angleberger and illustrated by John Hendrix, the main character Mr. Toad goes to great lengths to get his lawnmower to Tiny Island, requiring the use of a lot of different vehicles and machines! Anyone who’s lived on an island will probably have some sense of what that’s like. 🙂

Big Rig by Jamie A. Swenson and illustrated by Ned Young is a fun readaloud for storytime, with lots of action prompts and noisy sounds!


Flannel Boards We Shared

Down at the Station

(Tune: Little Bunny Foo Foo)

Down at the station early in the morning
See the little puffer trains all in a row
See the engine driver turn the little handle
Toot toot, choo choo, off we go!

(remove one train, and count, then sing again until there are no more trains)

(Source: A popular song written by Lee Ricks and Slim Gaillard in 1948)

Dump Trucks

(I only used eight, because at that time we had eight preschool-aged kids with us. Each time, I asked the kids their names and what they’d like to fill their dump truck with. Could be anything they wanted–ice cream, books, or toys!

Ten dump trucks all in a row. All filled with something and a place to go.
(Child’s name)’s truck is filled with ___________, that’s fine,
And now there’s only nine.

Nine dump trucks all in a row. All filled with something and a place to go.
(Another child’s) truck is filled with____, that’s great,
and now there’s only eight.

Eight dump trucks all in a row. All filled with something and a place to go.
(Another child’s) truck is filled with____, oh heaven
And now there’s only seven

Seven dump trucks all in a row. All filled with something and a place to go.
(Another child’s) truck is filled with____, what a mix,
And now there’s only six

Six dump trucks all in a row. All filled with something and a place to go.
(Another child’s) truck is filled with____, are they alive?
And now there’s only five

Five dump trucks all in a row. All filled with something and a place to go.
(Another child’s) truck is filled with____, ready to pour,
and now there’s only four

Four dump trucks all in a row. All filled with something and a place to go.
(Another child’s) truck is filled with____, could it be?
And now there’s only three

Three dump trucks all in a row. All filled with something and a place to go.
(Another child’s) truck is filled with____, what to do,
and now there’s only two

Two dump trucks all in a row. All filled with something and a place to go.
(Another child’s) truck is filled with____, weighing a ton,
and now there’s only one

One dump truck all in a row. All filled with something and a place to go.
(Another child’s) truck is filled with____, oh what fun,
and now there is none.


Action Songs & Bounces We Shared

We learned the sign language for various different vehicles while I told a little story. Before I said the words in bold, I showed the sign language and waited to see if the audience would guess it first.
(spoken)

I’m going to the grocery store.
I’m gonna hop on my… BIKE! (move hands like pedaling a bicycle)

 

But now I need to go somewhere a little bit farther.
I know! I’ll take my… MOTORCYLE! (move hands like revving up the motor with the handlebars)

 

Now I have to go far out of town.
I’m gonna have to take the… CAR! (move hands like operating a steering wheel)

 

Next week, I have to go out of state to visit my grandma.
I’ll take a… TRAIN! (with two fingers on each hand, cross them like an X)

 

And next month, when I go visit my aunt who lives in another country,
I’m gonna take a… PLANE! (lower your middle and ring finger and soar your hand through the sky)

(I made this up but was inspired by an idea I read in Baby Storytime Magic by Kathy MacMillan and Christine Kirker)

Green Says Go

(I used scarves for this activity, holding them up in the air)

Green says, “Go!” (march quickly)
Go! Go! Go!
Yellow says, “Slow!” (march slowly)
Slow…slow…slow
And red says, “Stop!” (stop and freeze)
Go! Go! Go! (march fast)
Slow…slow…slow (march slowly)
and STOP! (stop)

Credit: Toddler Storytime: http://storytimethemes.blogspot.com/2010/01/green-says-go.html

Open Shut Them

Open shut them, open shut them.
Give a little clap, clap, clap.
Open shut them, open shut them.
Place them on your lap, lap, lap.
Creep them, crawl them
Creep them, crawl them
Right up to your chin, chin, chin
Open up your little mouth… Buuuuuuuuuuut…
Do not let them in!

Engine, Engine

from
Songs & games for toddlers
featuring Bob McGrath & Katharine Smithrim

Engine, engine number 9
Coming down Chicago Line
If the train goes off its track
Do you want your money back?
Yes? (sway to the side)
No? (sway to the other side)
Maybe so? (sway back and forth)

Goodbye Friends (song in sign)

Click here for video:  Goodbye Friends

Goodbye friends, goodbye friends
Goodbye friends, it’s time to say goodbye.

Twinkle, Twinkle Traffic Light

Twinkle, twinkle traffic light
Round the corner shining bright
Red says Stop, Green says Go,
Yellow says Wait–even if you’re late!
Twinkle, twinkle traffic light
Round the corner shining bright


Music from CDs We Shared

Children love to sing and dance to music.  Here are some of the songs/bounces on CD that we used in storytime.

“Clap Everybody and Say Hello” from Sally Go Round the Sun by Kathy Reid-Naiman

“Wheels on the Bus” from Songs for Wiggleworms by Old Town School of Folk Music


Video We Watched

After we sang “Wheels on the Bus” we watched a video about a frustrated pigeon trying to drive a bus. I told the kids that sometimes we have to tell our friends no, for their safety, and we all had fun telling the pigeon NO! This is an animated version of the book Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus by Mo Willems.


Continue the Fun

Here are some more books about cars, trains, trucks and planes to check out at your Pasadena Public Library Branch:

AnnMarie Kolakowski

I'm a youth services librarian working in the Children's Room at the Pasadena Central Library. I purchase juvenile nonfiction books for all sites, juvenile Spanish books for all sites, and juvenile DVDs for the Central Library. I do a lot of programs with school-age kids, including Lucha Libros, writing workshops, and STEAM/science programs. I also do 16 weeks of Infant/Toddler Storytimes each year. I love what I do, working with kids of all ages to inspire them to learn and use their curiosity and imaginations. Outside of my work at the library, I am also the author of a book on creative writing activities for kids.

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