Friday, October 21, 2011

Everything Goes On Land by Brian Biggs - Book Review and an Even/Odd Street Activity

Perusing the library with my son never fails to entertain. He has very specific criteria in mind when it comes to choosing books. Basically anything with a train, car, airplane or other vehicle on the cover will garner his approval. Does this selection method hold true for all preschool-age boys? I don't know, but judging from the ragged condition of the transportation themed books in our library, I'd say this subject is very popular with little boys and quite possibly with little girls as well.

Since we've devoured nearly every transportation book in the library, we're always on the lookout for the latest and greatest zooming, zipping, chugging, or digging book. Enter Brian Biggs and his new Everything Goes picture book. My son's reaction? Love at first sight!

Everything Goes: On Land by Brian Biggs. Balzer + Bray / HarperCollins (September 2011); ISBN 9780061958090; 56 pages

From cover to cover, Everything Goes: On Land is chuck full of cars, trucks, bikes, trains -- tons of land-going city vehicles. Eye-catching and completely riveting for all transportation book aficionados, Biggs doesn't leave anything out in his jam-packed, cartoony illustrations. Even the odd, not oft seen vehicles make an appearance. Double Decker Bus. ✔ Elevated Train. ✔ Penny-farthing. ✔ Bird with a hat. ✔ (No, that's not a typo. There really are birds with hats. What's that got to do with vehicles? I have no idea, but the birds are pretty silly and appear in all the city pictures along with a lot other out-of-place things! Channeling Richard Scarry and Goldbug, perhaps?)

This is the kind of seek-and-find book one could easily stare at for hours, days, and not see everything, and there's also an interesting storyline weaving through the book about a little boy to consider. Henry drives into the city with his dad to a surprise location and the two talk [via speech balloons] about all the vehicles they see along the way, discussing some in great detail. Through a number of simple vehicle diagrams, the reader learns along with Henry about the interworkings of a car, tractor-trailer rig, RV, bicycle, and motorcycle. To add to the educational experience, Everything Goes: On Land also works as a challenging counting book. Readers can count one-by-one to 100, searching for each number in order.

The side-stories are quite amusing as well. One speedy driver gets pulled over by a cop, much to my son's amusement. And, my son gets a huge kick out of the tuna seeking cat and pocket-watch carrying, late bunny. But, more than anything else, my son adores the pages with the trains, especially the steam-powered locomotive. I think he might like trains even more than the little boy in the book, and that's saying quite a bit! You'll have to read the book yourself to find out why. :)

The book is targeted at preschoolers, but older kids enjoy checking this one out, too. My daughter took it with her to first grade when her class was discussing numbers in print. 'Twas a hit!

A corresponding I Can Read book, Everything Goes: Henry in a Jam is planned for future release, in addition to another Everything Goes series picture book about air travel.

Related Links:
Brian Biggs - Author Website
Everything Goes On Land - Road Trip Event Kit [pdf]
Everything Goes On Land - Activities [pdf]
Everything Goes on Land Downloadable Coloring Book

∞ ∞ ∞ Even and Odd Numbers Activity ∞ ∞ ∞

Everything Goes On Land contains the numbers 1-100 so I thought we'd work a little on our number and counting skills this week. The whole family (including DH) worked on coloring different Everything Goes vehicles. We used some of the coloring images from Biggs' Downloadable Coloring Book and I traced several other vehicles out of the book. My son only wanted to color trains and he requested I trace all four trains from the train page for him to color. (Mr. Biggs, you need some train coloring pages! My hand hurts from tracing.)

In total we colored 10 vehicles and numbered them. The kids sorted the even and odd vehicles and placed them on the correct street. My son also worked on his number recognition and order skills and placed all the vehicles in order from 1-10.

The even/odd idea is one I found on Pinterest. The teacher wife posted a similar activity involving houses.

Shibley Smiles
A Mommy's Adventures hosts the "stART" meme (Story + Art) each week. Add your kids craft post to the Kid's Get Crafty linky at Red Ted Art's Blog. Writing a post about play? Join the It's Playtime party! Find more great book tie-ins at JDaniel4's Mom Read, Explore, Learn link-up. Browse more book posts at Little Sprout Books' Feed Me Books Friday.

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bgorden said...

Love it! Thanks for the idea on even/odd houses. What a great fun teaching activity. I would love for you to link up at

MaryAnne said...

This sounds like a great book! And I really like the Even Street/Odd Street activity!

Storied Cities said...

I think it is safe to say that most preschool boys are drawn to transportation... at least the one I know! And the fact that this book also has a counting theme will make it doubly welcome in our house. I hadn't heard of this book and am looking forward to seeking it out!

Jen said...

I've never seen this book. I like the illustrations and your activity idea for even and odd. Thanks for sharing- I really enjoy your blog and stopping by when I get a chance. :)

Creative and Curious Kids!

maggy, red ted art said...

What fantastic colouring! And love your odd and even streets!

Thanks for sharing on Kids Get Crafty!


JDaniel4's Mom said...

Thank you for linking to Read.Explore.Learn.

Your streets are so cute! I bet JDaniel would love to make one too.

I am pinning this idea.

Natalie PlanetSmarty said...

It sounds like a great book, especially for transportation enthusiast. Thanks for sharing it and all the links!

Christy Killoran said...

I love your activity! Ouch about the tracing - I'm sure your hand was sore!

Brian biggs said...

Whoops on the trains. I'll try to add one to the coloring book next week! Thanks for the great review. Glad Everything Goes is a hit, and wow on the tracing.