C is for Cars
Written by Rachel Hoggan
Written by Rachel Hoggan
I printed out some Highway ABC Cards from Making Learning Fun. At first, I just printed out letters C, A, and R to spell "car" but the boys had so much fun with these, they begged me to print out even more letters. As they drove their toy cars around each letter, they practiced making the sound of that letter. It reminded me a bit of Montessori sandpaper letters in the sense that they were having a tactile interaction with the letter's shape and sound. It was a perfect way for little boys to learn. In fact, it was during this week, that my oldest had a breakthrough and sounded out his first CVC word. Hooray for Highway ABCs! We also had a lot of old Car and Driver magazines that a friend had given us, so we did this ABC activity as well.
We had a lot of fun with our books about Cars and Trucks.
Cars and Trucks and Things that Go by Richard Scarry
We really enjoyed this classic, entertaining book by Richard Scarry. Each page is full of funny comments by the characters. Warning: It can take forever to get through if you read every little word. But if your boys are like mine, they will LOVE it.
Cars: Rushing! Honking! Zooming! By Patricia Hubbell
To balance out the long Richard Scarry book, this is a short, easy book about cars. It has simple rhyming words, facts about cars, and fun retro art.
Rattletrap Car by Phyllis Root
The engaging pictures, rhythm, and rhyme made this book a big hit with my kids.
Good Night Engines
My boys enjoyed this sweet and simple book that featured many different kinds of engines, including trucks, trains, planes, and cars.
We played a version of this parking lot game from Happy Brown House. The author has a free printable version on her website, although I made my own game board with 12 spaces instead of 10. I also made a color-matching car mat like this one. Even though my kids know their colors quite well, they still had fun sifting through their boxes of cars to find color matches.
We checked out the Eyewitness book about cars from the library:
Though we didn't read every word of every page, we read a lot of the book, and we all learned many things about the history and technical aspects of cars. The boys' dad also got into the theme this week and gave the kids a tour of the parts of our own car.
We made these toilet paper race cars from Mama Jenn, although we used buttons for wheels.
We also painted with toy cars. We have done this several times before and my boys love it! I taped a large piece of butcher paper to the table and gave each boy a plate with some paint on it. Then they dipped their cars in the paint and had fun rolling the cars across the paper and seeing the different patterns the wheels made. I found the best toy cars for painting are those with bumpy wheels because they make patterns that are more interesting.
I made a car sensory bin for the boys with black beans as a base (like gravel), cut up yellow chenille stems as road lines, and some road signs from their train sets, some transportation buttons, and some small toy dump trucks. They loved filling up the dump trucks with the beans and driving their trucks and cars around in this bin.
We went on a field trip to the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles. If you are in the LA area--this is definitely a great museum for the whole family. We enjoyed seeing old-fashioned cars, modern cars, and famous cars from Hollywood movies. And the kids loved the hands-on family area where they dressed up, sat in pretend cars, and raced Hot Wheels down long ramps.
We made a simple graham-cracker car-shaped snack. We had some leftover m & m's from our week studying bees, so we added those to the wheels to make them extra sweet.
We have some Disney Cars themed "Go Fish" cards that I picked up in the dollar aisle at Target last year. We played "Go Fish" (as much as a 2-year-old and 3-year-old can play it). We also love to turn old cardboard boxes into pretend cars, trucks, and trains. And we get a lot of cardboard boxes around our house with all the diapers we go through!
We printed out race cars and sang "5 fast race cars". We also enjoyed listening to this CD which includes some fun Car songs:
Just be aware that the songs on this CD are not in the Cars movie--but they are fun car-themed songs such as "Road Trip," and "My Wonderful Car." We talked about safety in the car and sang "I'm a Little Seatbelt." We also found some other transportation-related songs on this website.
We really enjoyed our "C is for Cars" week. For more ideas, see my board on Pinterest!