Does your child love trains? Because do I have the perfect new book for them!
Recently I had the pleasure of hosting a story time in the park for some of my Macaroni Kid subscribers to launch the adorable book by Amy Krouse Rosenthal called Choo-Choo School. It is also the perfect story to get kids geared up for September and into back-to-school mode—whether it’s in a classroom or at home
As it’s been a while since I could host a party I was excited to be able to really get into the train theme for this one. I held the story time at Assiniboine Park where families each brought their own picnic blankets to spread out around one of the picnic areas. I had brought along some train themed activities to keep the kids occupied while everyone settled in before we started the story time.
Let's Get Crafty
As the story focuses on some adorable train cars that attend school where they practice their alphabet, have lunch as well as a lot of other school activities, I provided the kids with colouring sheets of train car alphabet (you can grab a copy here), cut out coloured shapes for them to glue onto a sheet to make a train (practicing their math skills with shape recognition) and supplies to construct trains out of cookies (which I prepackaged into individual baggies to make it easier for the kids).
If you plan to have a story time in the park with friends a tip for letting the kids colour on their picnic blankets is to grab some clipboards for each of them. This gave them a hard surface and was easy for me to transport.
All Aboard for Story Time
After everyone had a chance to work on the activities it was time for the story time. Candlewick Press generously provided us Choo-Choo School books for all 15 families that attended and since we were spread out on picnic blankets I was able to hand out the books to each family so that they could follow along as I read. This way I had a lot of happy kids and no one saying they couldn't see the pictures!
With the bright, energetic, cartoon-styled illustrations of the 7 little train cars making their way through a day at school, this story is very engaging for the kids. Its also funny (and punny) to read aloud with its rhyming text. Whether the kids fully understand the clever little puns like 'are you ready to train your minds?' or why I laughed that Flatcar sings a bit off-key, the text is bound to make you all smile. One of the parents told me a few days later that they've read the story every night for bedtime since they got it.
Definitely the perfect book for the train obsessed kids in your family that are heading off to preschool and kindergarten this year.
Oh but wait there is more
As I mentioned, I decided we needed to go all out for this train themed story time and picked Assiniboine Park, well that is because across the road from where we had the story time is the Steam Train! We all loaded up for a ride around the park to end a very fun day.
It was so much fun to see families again. You can see a full recap of our party here (click to watch the video on YouTube):
* I was compensated and received some party favours for this article/review, yet all opinions are my own.