Reading Together

Storybook guide based on Stuart J. Murphy’s “Beep Beep, Vroom Vroom!”

Explore math while reading and talking about this storybook.

Topic:

Activity Summary

Use this storybook guide with the book “Beep Beep, Vroom Vroom!”
Many public libraries have this book.

Reading guide

About the Story

Kevin doesn’t want little sister Molly to play with his toy cars, but when he leaves, she can’t resist taking them off the shelf. She has fun making the cars go BEEP BEEP and VROOM VROOM and CRASH CRASH. But Kevin is about to return! Can she put them back on the shelf just as they were before Kevin left? Molly lines them up in the right pattern—red-blue-yellow, red-blue-yellow—and gets a special present of her own!

Words to Learn

MATH WORDS
pattern, your turn, line up, downstairs, upstairs

OTHER WORDS
honked, zoomed, banged, grumbled

About the Math

This story is about repeating patterns. While listening to and looking for the patterns on each page, children can learn that:

  • There are different kinds of patterns. Some just repeat a single sound, like BEEP BEEP or VROOM VROOM. Some have three colors in order, like red-blue-yellow, and then repeat the whole order: red-blue-yellow, red-blue-yellow.
  • They can predict what comes next in the pattern by listening to and looking for what repeats. When they see the cars lined up red-blue-yellow, red-blue-yellow, they can guess what comes next: red-blue … YELLOW!
  • We can make patterns out of many things, such as colors, sizes, shapes, and sounds. Not only do the cars’ colors make a pattern, but their different shapes do, too.

Math Talk During Reading

  • DISCUSS THE PATTERNS IN THE STORY
    What sound pattern did the cars make when they honked and zoomed and banged? What pattern do Kevin’s cars make on the shelf? What patterns did Molly make on the shelf?
  • GUESS WHAT COMES NEXT IN THE PATTERN
    If Kevin had more cars on his shelf, what would they be? What should come after Molly’s purple car?
  • NOTICE THE DIFFERENT TYPES OF PATTERNS
    I see that Molly’s pattern uses colors: green-purple, green-purple. Let’s find a pattern that uses the shapes of the cars, too.

Try to come up with some of your own questions and comments, too!

Activity After Reading

  • CHILDREN CAN PRACTICE MAKING PATTERNS WITH THEIR OWN TOYS
    “Let’s make a pattern with your toys! We have a toy truck, a toy train, a toy boat, a toy truck, a toy train…What should we put next to continue the pattern?” Children can make patterns with other household objects, too, like forks and spoons.
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