Construction Site on Christmas Night

Book review by
Regan McMahon, Common Sense Media
Construction Site on Christmas Night Book Poster Image
Hardworking trucks get perfect gifts in sweet bedtime tale.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this book.

Educational Value

Shows the jobs each truck do, and how the gifts they get will help them do their jobs better. 

Positive Messages

Implied message that working hard is a good thing, and everyone needs to rest after a long, busy day. Meeting deadlines matters: "This important work can't wait;/ they'll get it done and make it great." "All grateful for this special day,/ and helpful friends at work and play,/ for all that's given and received,/ and all that's blessed this Christmas Eve ..."

Positive Role Models & Representations

All the trucks are hardworking, kind, thoughtful, and generous. The unseen crew generously select perfect gifts for each truck to show their appreciation for the special jobs each truck does.  

Violence & Scariness

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Construction Site on Christmas Night is by Sherri Duskey Rinker (Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site) and illustrated by AG Ford. It's Christmas Eve and the trucks and construction vehicles are busy working on a project ultimately revealed to be a fire station, where the fire trucks go to sleep at night. As they finish their shift, the trucks each find gifts perfectly suited to their jobs, left for them by the unseen construction crew with thank you tags attached. Themes of hard work and gratitude fit seamlessly in this charming holiday tale. 





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What's the story?

In CONSTRUCTION SITE ON CHRISTMAS NIGHT, the busy trucks are finishing "the last big project of the year" on Christmas Eve: building "a special house." As they work till nightfall on a snowy night, one by one the trucks discover a perfect gift for them with a thank you tag attached, left by the unseen construction crew.  Bulldozer finds a carbon steel blade, and on the facing page the text reads, "Merry Christmas, Bulldozer. Goodnight." Excavator gets a shiny yellow scoop, and the refrain is, "Merry Christmas, Excavator. Goodnight." And so it goes for each truck, including the personalized refrain. Cement Mixer gets a brand-new drum painted like a candy cane, Dump Truck gets new tires, and Crane Truck gets a wrecking ball painted red and green like a Christmas ornament. Finally, three fire trucks plus a fire car and van roar up and park at the their new fire station. "On this nearly Christmas night/ they find a new home, built just right." And Crane Truck has even placed a star on top of the building. "Shhh. All the trucks are tucked in tight./ Merry Christmas! And ... goodnight."

Is it any good?

This sweet bedtime read in the popular Construction Site series gets a holiday twist, and a new illustrator captures the look and feel of the two previous books. The rhymes are clever, well-crafted and fun to read out loud, and the themes of hard work and gratitude are gentle and fun. Busy yellow-hued daytime scenes contrast with quiet dark blue night scenes flecked with snow, conveying each truck's workday capped off by welcome slumber. It's a delight for truck lovers, holiday fans, and kids who enjoy some rhythmic verse as they nod off to dreamland. 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about all the trucks in Construction Site on Christmas Night. What are all the different jobs they do? Why do you think the gifts they got from the unseen crew would make them happy? What would be a perfect gift for you? 

  • How does the artist show day and night? What colors does he use for each? How does he make the snowy scenes look cold and the sunny scenes look warm? 

  • Which truck is your favorite? Which picture do you like best? 

Book details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love trucks and Christmas stories

Themes & Topics

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