Rolling with Reading

When I began this post, I was going to write about kid friendly forms of transportation such as; bikes, scooters and skateboards. I changed my focus, after I had a discussion with a friend about how books have the ability to change our lives. 



My personal love affair with bikes began early in life. In fact, before I ever knew how to ride a bicycle I owned the book that inspired me to learn.  Bears on Wheels by Stan and Jan Berenstain was one of my favorite books and I read it over and over.

Letter in life, when most teens were learning to drive my passion for riding bikes continued. During the summer months, it was not unusual for me to “spin” the day away, and I soon convinced my family and friends into join me.  What happened next, I could have never imagined…my dad said goodbye to his career and family purchased a bike store in our community. 

Am I saying that a single book changed our lives? Well, not exactly. However, my education and experience has taught me that even the youngest children have personal preferences and  they are able to make choices. So, as a romantic, I would like to believe that one of my favorite childhood books may have had some sort of influence on my life.  

If you know of a family friendly place to cycle in Houston or the surrounding areas, please share this information by posting a comment. Moreover, if a book has changed your life for the better I would love to hear your story.  

Bears On Wheels

An acrobatic act begins with one bear on a unicycle and ends with twenty-one bears and sixteen wheels flying through the air.




The Best Bike Ride Ever James Proimos 
The perfect book for every first-time bike rider I want a bike! I want a bike! This is all Bonnie says for one full week, until her parents surprise her with a bike! Then: Oh boy! Oh boy! Before she knows it, Bonnie is off on a wobbly course around the backyard that becomes an adventure of epic proportions. She bikes over mountains, under giraffes, up the Statue of Liberty, through the Grand Canyon, and past the Giant Cheese. There's only one thing Bonnie can't do on her bike . . . STOP!!! But after a tumble and an important lesson from Mom and Dad, Bonnie is back in the saddle. This celebration of a timeless rite of passage will have kids clamoring to read it, read it again, and then strike out on their own bike-riding adventures.


 Froggy Rides a Bike  Jonathan London 

Froggy just got his very first bike, and it's exactly what he wanted. Almost. Finishing touches like a bell and a horn have to be added before Froggy is ready to ride. Then, surrounded by cheering friends, Froggy starts to pedal. Oops! He falls off. He tries again. Oops! Riding a bike is hard! After a long day, and a few bumps and bruises, Froggy finally learns to ride--and once he does he can't wait to go again. Froggy Rides a Bike is a reassuring reminder that practice makes perfect-- and it's sure to make kids eager to learn to ride on their own.


New Red Bike! James E. Ransome.

Up and down! Round and round! Tom is having a blast zooming all over the neighborhood on his new red bike. But when Tom stops by Sam's house to show off his wheels, he's in for an unhappy surprise. The new bike is suddenly...gone. Could his best friend, Sam, be the culprit? This deceptively simple-seeming picture book offers a clever take on sharing.



The Bike Lesson Stan and Jan Berenstain.

Classic  Berenstain fun.  Small bear gets a new bike and his father teaches him to ride.






Duck on a Bike  David Shannon.

Caldecott Honor winner David Shannon applies his wonderful off-beat humor to the story of a duck who decides to try riding a bike--and loves it! Another young, funny book perfect for reading aloud. One day down on the farm, Duck got a wild idea. "I bet I could ride a bike," he thought. He waddled over to where the boy parked his bike, climbed on and began to ride. At first he rode slowly and he wobbled a lot, but it was fun! Duck rode past Cow and waved to her. "Hello, Cow!" said Duck. "Moo," said Cow. But what she thought was, "A duck on a bike? That's the silliest thing I've ever seen!" And so Duck rides past sheep, horse, and all the other barnyard animals. Suddenly, a group of kids ride by on their bikes and run into the farmhouse, leaving the bikes outside. Now ALL the animals can ride bikes, just like Duck!

Franklin Rides a Bike  Paulette Bourgeois 

In this Franklin Classic Storybook, Franklin is determined to ride his bike without training wheels, and he can't understand why it seems so easy for his friends or why it's so hard for him.

How Shall We Travel  Helen Lanz.

Looks at the different ways we travel from place to place and advises on the most planet-friendly ways of getting around.

Staying Safe on My Bike  Joanne Mattern

Explains using turn signals and how to ride safely near roads and other people.

On a Bike Robert M. Hamilton

Introduces bicycles, including the different parts, why people ride bicycles, and different sports involving cycling.

For Advanced Riders - Tween Reads

BMX Challenge Jake Maddox 

Jason never turns down a dare, but when his classmates challenge him to a BMX competition Jason must learn to ride a BMX bike or this dare will be his last.

Extreme BMX Wil Mara

Explores the sport of extreme BMX.

Bike Mechanic Paul Mason.

This guide is jam packed with information!  It provides a practical, hands on advice from expert insiders, along with step by step instructions and photography, as well as links to online how to videos.

Additional Resources list of the Best Bike Trails in Houston