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  • Genna Nichol

Little Blue Truck: Books to Help with Speech, Language Development and Literacy

Updated: May 22, 2023

Horn went "Beep!"

Engine purred.

Friendliest sounds

you ever heard.

A little blue truck named Blue rolls through the countryside making friends along the way. When he gets into trouble helping a big dump truck stuck in the mud, his friends come to the rescue, and they all learn the importance of kindness and teamwork.

Alice Shertle's bestselling book Little Blue Truck has delighted children since 2008. In addition to being a great story, the book contains many other textual elements to help kids with speech, language development and literacy.

Little Blue truck story helps with speech, language development and literacy

Long before children start to read, they learn to recognize word sounds. This is called phonological awareness and is a key part of developing literacy, including later reading and spelling success. Even if your child is too young to understand the words, when they hear words and sounds, they start to make important connections. That is why it's never too early to start reading to your child.

The importance of rhyming

Little Blue Truck is written in rhyme. Rhyme creates a certain beat and rhythm to the writing, which makes it appealing to children. Words like duck-truck-stuck, day-way, and road-load-toad also help children notice parts of sounds within words, a key part to developing phonological awareness. If your child is older, you can even ask what else rhymes with a given word to help them start manipulating sounds themselves. Beep rhymes with sheep, but also heap, deep, feet, creep... Have fun making sounds and new words together!

Other fun rhymes in this book include:

• purred-heard

• eye-by

• moo-blue

• peep-beep-sheep

• curve-swerve

• scared-cared

• might-tight

• rump-dump

In addition to rhyming, Little Blue Truck also helps with:

Matching animal and object sounds

• "maaa" said a goat

• "neigh" said a horse

• "quack" said a duck

• "beep" said blue

Practicing speech sounds

• /tꭍ / chick, chicken,

• /d/ dump, deep, duck, road, toad

• /g/ gallop, goat, pig, big

• /h/ horse, horn, honk, help, head

• /k/ and /c/ blends cow, cluck, croak, duck, truck, stuck

• /l/ and /l/ blends little, load, roll, wheel, blue, cluck

• /m/ moo, maa, mud, muck

• /p/ pig, puddle, beep, dump

• /r/ and /r/ blends ride, road, roll, roooom, rump, truck, green, croak

• /s/ and /s/ blends sunk, pass, scared, stuck

• /ꭍ/ sheep, push,

• /t/ and /tr/ blends toad, tire, truck

Language and grammar concepts

• sequencing events in the story

• adjectives to describe objects (little blue truck, big green toad, big fat truck)

• regular and irregular verbs (went, heard, came, winked, rolled, cried)

• contrasting (little-big, dirty-clean)

Introduce your child to the many books of Little Blue Truck for hours of reading, bonding and learning together.

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