If you do doing preschool / family story times, or work with preschoolers, this reworked version of Old MacDonald Had a Farm should definitely be added to your picture book rotation. Instead of just farm animals, Old MacDonald and his power tool-toting lady (go girl!) have a farm filled with heavy duty machinery. That’s right, we’ve got bulldozers and steamrollers, front loaders and dump trucks, and much, much more. Turns out the MacDonalds are building a brand new monster truck rally track on their property, and all the farm animals are getting in on the fun.
As a children’s librarian I like to think I know a thing or two about children’s literature, but I am no snob, and I’ll happily embrace just about anything that helps support literacy development and gets kids excited about reading. A lot of kids are going to go out of their minds with excitement when they see this picture book, and that is recommendation enough for me.
Eda Kaban’s adorable illustrations absolutely seal the deal – each spread is a riot of colour and detail, with a delightful array of sweet farm animals participating in the building project (wearing appropriate safety equipment of course – safety first, kids).
I really appreciate that Ms. MacDonald takes a strong role in the illustrations, getting directly involved in a number of traditionally male activities like fixing an engine and detailing a car’s exterior. Plenty of little girls are into cars – as a child I used to play with my cousins’ toy cars all the time! Plus, more and more women are moving into traditionally male-dominated trades like construction. AND how cool is it to see the older MacDonalds as vibrant, active seniors? Being old doesn’t have to mean having one foot in the grave, kiddos!
Is Old MacDonald Had a Truck silly? Absolutely! It’s absolutely bonkers! But it’s also a heck of a lot of fun, and will likely delight young readers, and have them asking to read it again and again. Highly recommended.