Monday, October 11, 2010

Planes, Trains, and Automobiles

This weekend we went to the National Museum of Transportation which is so nicely located in our city. I had never been there but I thought it would be a fun Friday outing for the boys. We spent an hour in a preschool centered play area. Then we rode the mini-train.

After that we went up and toured the big trains.

 We got to go inside of several of them.
They were so big. My boys, so little! There were also boats, planes, fire trucks, etc. We've been to several carnival type things this fall which have included helicopters, trains, and other automotives so I decided to search out some of our favorite Transportation themed books.
Freight trainFreight Train by Donald Crews. We love the Crews series of transportation themed books. We also love Inside Freight Train which includes movable pages so the reader can view the outside of the train car or the inside.  Other Books we like by Donald Crews Harbor, Truck, Flying

Bus Stops by Taro Gomi I love that both of my boys are able to enjoy this book. The book follows a bus around during a normal course of it's day. Tyson loves to look at the simple outline of the bus. However, there is a subtext that is kind of like an I Spy game. Logan loves trying to find more of the details on each page. (Funny thing, while there were no busses on display at the museum- that I saw- there were busses in the parking lot for school kids who were attending on field trips. Logan thought they were part of the display and loved checking them out.)

The Little Engine That CouldThe Little Engine that Could by Watty Piper Great to add a fiction story to our study of transportation. And of course, it's always great to add a classic. We have been enjoying this book in a new way though. We've been reading the ebook version on (where you can read it for FREE). I Knew You Could!We've also been reading this sequel of sorts to The Little Engine that Could. It is called I Knew You Could and is a sweet story of how the Little Engine goes through ups and downs but with the help of his friends and by making right choices he is able to accomplish his goals. It is also FREE to read at

Trucks. Lap EditionTrucks by Byron Barton Our library has this awesome set of transportation board books by Byron Barton. The illustrations are bold, one per page, outlined in black. There isn't a lot of detail but they are perfect for the very young readers (Like my 8 month old). We've been working on pointing, turning pages, and opening and closing the book together. He seems to really enjoy these books. The text is also minimal, "Here is the..." but could be good for beginning readers.

Child's Garden of Verses, AA Child's Garden of Verses by Robert Louis Stevenson. I think RL Stevenson's poems could accompany us on many of our journeys. My babies love for me to recite the poem, "The Swing" when I push them on the swing. After visiting the museum and climbing on a boat, Logan heard the poem, "My bed is a Boat." He got so excited and said, "Remember, Mommy, Remember on the boat?" I'm going to copy the text of this poem here in case you aren't familiar. I think it's a great example of reading something that is far above a child's reading "level" but if the child can make a connection to it, he will understand it.
(I hope I'm not breaking any copyright laws here but these poems are all over the web.)

My bed is like a little boat;
Nurse helps me in when I embark;
She girds me in my sailor's coat
And starts me in the dark.

At night I go on board and say
Good-night to all my friends on shore;
I shut my eyes and sail away
And see and hear no more.
And sometimes things to bed I take,
As prudent sailors have to do;
Perhaps a slice of wedding-cake,
Perhaps a toy or two.

All night across the dark we steer;
But when the day returns at last,
Safe in my room beside the pier,
I find my vessel fast.

What transportation related books would you take on your travels?

I'm linking this up (check out this link for other fab book ideas)


  1. Hi there!

    Thanks for sharing about wasn't aware of it, but have gone and signed up!

    Take care,

  2. What a fun museum! We read many of those books and enjoyed them too. And I like the idea of starting good poetry early. Thanks for joining WMCIR!

  3. What a great museum! Looks like they had a blast!