Byron Barton's classic book about a busy day at the construction site is perfect for fans of Richard Scarry and Tom Lichtenheld!
Rhythmic text and bold, graphic illustrations convey all the energy and excitement of the day while workers use a variety of machines to knock down a building and begin constructing a new one. Young readers will love learning the names of the machines while seeing them at work.
Supports the Common Core State Standards.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
When you write as many reviews of children's books as I do (and is there any more pompous way to begin a sentence, I wonder) you sometimes find yourself at a loss for words when it comes to the simpler ones. And author/illustrator Byron Barton is, if nothing else, the patron saint of picture book straightforwardness. There is no wry undertone to a Barton book. No sly wit. No winks or nods to parents and educators beneath the simple childlike text. Nope. Byron Barton is an author that writes stories for children and children alone. In "Machines At Work", Barton (who's millions of books have covered every topic from planes to dinosaurs) tackles that perpetual toddler fascination - - the worksite.
In this particular book, we observe a wide variety of small workers (male, female, white, black, etc.) off to work. Some climb readily into their machines. Others dictate instructions from below. For this day, the workers knock down a building, bulldoze trees, dump rubble, take a...
When I first got this for my son (2 years), I thought "What a snooze-fest!" We were still high on the Mo Willems wave, still in love with Knuffle Bunny and the slightly off-kilter viewpoint of the Pigeon, so the utter barrenness and simplicity of Machines at Work honestly put me off. But, as it is all about the baby (and don't he know it!), Connor simply loves it! Although he is fickle (we have now moved on to the pop-up Bug series by David A. Carter) it firmly held the New Boy Times #1 bedseller slot for a good 3 weeks (an eternity to the toddler set). It also was known to douse many a tantrum (great diversion - "I know you just ka-bonked your head on the dining room table for the fortieth time today, but LOOK AT THESE COOL TRUCKS!") and entertain on long car rides.
The story (as it is) involves a diverse work crew doing stuff with simple 4-5 word narration for each page. It is so simple, it is almost zen-like. And Connor came to be able to repeat each phrase as we turned...
My 3 1/2 year old loves this book. And I love it too. For me, it's fun and easy to read. There is only one sentence on each set of pages, and it is in large letters. After each page that I read, my son repeats it. I don't mind reading this one again and again.
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