Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Chuck's Truck

I've always liked old trucks. My days of driving them are over (they're horrible gas guzzlers and no good in the winter), but I still turn my head when I see one going down the road. Kids love trucks too. So Chuck's Truck, by Peggy Perry Anderson, ought to go over well.

One by one, all of the animals on the farm hop into Chuck's truck for a ride into town. Unfortunately, before they can get there the truck falls apart and has to be towed home. Poor Chuck is heartbroken. But the animals have connections, and Chuck's truck ends up looking better than ever.

As you can probably tell by the title Chuck's Truck has a lot of internal rhyme and alliteration, making for fun reading. "So Sue and Lou and the goat Flo too, Nip and Tuck and the burro Buck, Fat Cat Pat and the workhorse Huck with the duck Luck, the chicken that goes 'cluck,' and Chuck get a friend to tow the truck." Take a deep breath, and remember that this type of rhyming helps your kids distinguish individual sounds within words (see tip below).

The art is unique also. Though it is not listed, I believe most of the art is crayon, though the gleam of the new-improved truck at the end must be something else. The texture of the very colorful images gives a nice embossed feel.

Chuck's Truck is a good read-aloud which can be paired with One Dog Canoe.

Early Literacy Tip of the Day

We mentioned distinguishing sounds within words above. This is called Phonological Awareness. It helps in the learning-to-read process later on. Here's a game you can play to work on this skill. Change the first or last letters of words to make new words.

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