Tia Isa Wants a Car
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Tia Isa Wants a Car

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3.84 of 5 stars 3.84  ·  rating details  ·  158 ratings  ·  52 reviews
A little girl pitches in to help her tía save up for a big old car - and take the whole family to the beach - in a story told with warmth and sweetness.

Tía Isa wants a car. A shiny green car the same color as the ocean, with wings like a swooping bird. A car to take the whole family to the beach. But saving is hard when everything goes into two piles - one for here and one...more
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published June 14th 2011 by Candlewick Press
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David
Tía Isa Wants a Car by Meg Medina, illustrated by Claudio Munoz is the story of a little girl who pitches in to help her tía save up for a big old car, to take the whole family to the beach, when they are reunited again in the United States.

The text in a large font includes dialog and text in both English and Spanish. Among the Spanish words used are tía, un pisicorre, Sí, Así, Tío, Rrrridículo, señor, niña, español, la vieja, mi vida, Abuelo, Mami, Papi, besito, vamos, ese mismo, mi hija, los p...more
Marissa Garcia
Tia Isa wants a car for freedom and the family but times are tough. Her enterprising young niece has a way to help, though.

Gorgeous, succinct prose pairs with equally expressive illustration in this beautiful picture book. The immigrant experience is handled with elegance and sophiscation, making all audiences, Latino or non-Latino, feel included and invested. Suggest to: patrons who want books about family, transportation, multiculturalism, the immigrant experience, books with great illustratio...more
Danielle
Tia Isa has one wish other than being reunited with her family far away, to have a car that will carry them to the beach. Money is tight though and much of her savings must go to her family back home. When her niece sees the difference between what Tia Isa has and what she needs she decides it’s time for her to help. In no time they have the car Tia Isa dreamed of and a perfect day at the beach.

This is a story that all ages will love from children to adults because of it’s beautiful illustration...more
Tasha
A little girl’s Tia Isa wants to get a car in order to take the family to the beach. She wants one that is the color of the ocean with pointy wings at the back. But Tio Andres laughs at the idea, calling it “ridiculous.” They don’t have much money, but head to a car dealer where they find out they need to save more. So the little girl sets out to help. She stacks fruit at the store, feeds people’s pets, and teaches Spanish. She waits until her money sock is bulging full and then surprises her Ti...more
Maryam
This story is reminiscent of A Chair for My Mother, with Latina heroines. The financial (and feminist) struggles of the determined pair make you root for them throughout the book. At first, I really didn't think much of the book or the illustrations (watercolors in children's books have to work hard to win me over). But it's the kind of book that teaches you NOT to judge it by its cover. It really does get better and better the more you read it, think and talk about it. The characters are strong...more
Tiffany Beedle
The story is about Tia Isa(aunt Isa) wanting a car. The little girl tells the story of her aunt wanting a car. The problem with Aunt Isa wanting a car is that she cannot afford it. The plan is to save money to buy the car. The little girl tries to do research and find out ways that her aunt Isa can buy a car, or save money to buy a car. Tia Isa wanted to buy a car to take them to the sea, to see the pretty water. In the end, Tia Isa is able to get the money, and afford a car to buy and take them...more
Sarah Collins
Book Title: Tia Isa Wants a Car by Meg Medina

Description: Tia Isa wants to buy a car to take the family to the sea. She scrapes up her money but it isn’t enough. Her niece (the narrator) happens upon odd jobs and surprises her aunt with enough money to buy the car and go to the sea.

Focus:

1) Show-Not-Tell: Meg Medina does a great job of show-not-tell, providing a good model for students.

Teach:

CCSS.W.3.3 Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective techniq...more
Michelle
I enjoyed this story of a girl and her aunt, Aunt Isa. Aunt Isa wants a car but doesn't have enough money. Even though Uncle Andres thinks her idea is "rrrrridiculous," she continues working toward her goal of saving enough to buy just the right car. As a surprise, the narrator takes on some jobs of her own to chip in toward the purchase.
This book brings in the social studies topic of families being separated by borders. In addition to the car, Tia Isa also wants her family to be able to come li...more
Michelle
I enjoyed this story of a girl and her aunt, Aunt Isa. Aunt Isa wants a car but doesn't have enough money. Even though Uncle Andres thinks her idea is "rrrrridiculous," she continues working toward her goal of saving enough to buy just the right car. As a surprise, the narrator takes on some jobs of her own to chip in toward the purchase.
This book brings in the social studies topic of families being separated by borders. In addition to the car, Tia Isa also wants her family to be able to come li...more
Carol Royce Owen
Tia Isa wants a car and her young niece wants to see that dream fulfilled so much that she is willing to work hard and pitch in her own money to help save. Tia Isa has been saving for a long while, but she sends a great deal of her money to her family far away.
I read this book because it has been chosen as a Vermont Red Clover Book for 2012-2013. I don't know if I would have chosen it, otherwise, and that would have been my loss, because it is a wonderful book. I love this book for the similes a...more
Kathleen Behrendt
This beautifully written picture book shows the life lesson of patiently saving for a big acquisition (a car in this case). It reinforces the positive outcome of hardwork to achieve your hopes and dreams. The story also shows the close ties of immigrants to their families back home and the obligation of sending money to help support them. The little girl, who is not named in the story, lives in the city - far away from the beach she yearns to visit - with a "Keep Off" sign on the grassy area in...more
Barbara
While saving money to bring the rest of their family to the United States, an aunt longs for a used car to travel to the beach. But the aunt's brother scoffs at the idea of her ever being able to put away enough money to do so. Her niece begins doing all sorts of tasks to help her reach her goal. Once they have sufficient savings, they purchase a green car that is big enough to take the whole family wherever they want to go. The story's reminder that some things are worth the wait and that dream...more
Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance
Tia Isa wants a car but she does not have enough money. Her niece finds many ways to make money and give it to her aunt. Together the two have enough to buy an old, big car, a car big enough to hold the entire family when they are all reunited again in the United States.

“Tia Isa wants a car.

She tells me after work when she still smells of lemon pies from the bakery.

She is turning the jump rope that’s tied to the fence and I am already up to twenty.

‘Un pisicorre,’ she says, ‘to take us to the bea...more
Angelica
What a beautiful and endearing story. Told from the perspective of a little girl whose aunt is determined to get a car to take her and eventually her family to the beach. Tia Isa saves and saves but when she goes for the car it isn't enough. So the little girl helps Tia Isa by doing little odd jobs for people. In the end they can afford the car and their dreams spark up again.


What a fantastic story about the simplest of things. To want a car just to take it to the beach. The author really bring...more
Brigida
Tia Isa wants to buy a shiny green car to take her family to the beach. Yet, money is tight due to the financial obligations that prohibit her from buying such car. However, she is determined to get that car despite what her brother thinks. In turn, her niece seeing that her Tia Isa is serious, decides she wants to help. So, she tells people what her Tia Isa wants to do and they pay her for doing simple jobs. Before you know it, the little girl suprises her Tia Isa with the money she has saved f...more
Jennifer Leigh
I love the story of working for something you want. I love the culture integration into this story, too. A great multicultural children's book!
Linda
Sharing books about people who don’t have a lot of money, but save for something important, like a car, and still send money back to family in their former country are to be respected for their sacrifice and discipline as they save. A little sister tells the story and her older sister, Tia Isa, says she wants a car so they all can go to the beach. There are some sweet actions by the little sister in the book, doing what she can do while waiting. Some Spanish is included, but the country of origi...more
Kathy Ellen Davis
I thought this was a very sweet story.
And simple: Tia Isa wants a car.
I love that the narrator sees things happening with the adults, and also finds ways she can help.

I love the simplicity of the illustrations...maybe it's the watercolor that make them so appealing, and many times they are at an unexpected angle that gives a very good viewpoint on the situation.

What a great story about family and working hard.
The setting is done really well in this book too.

Oh yeah, and there are sprinklings of...more
Marissa Garcia
Tia Isa wants a car for freedom and the family but times are tough. Her enterprising young niece has a way to help, though.

Gorgeous, succinct prose pairs with equally expressive illustration in this beautiful picture book. The immigrant experience is handled with elegance and sophiscation, making all audiences, Latino or non-Latino, feel included and invested. Suggest to: patrons who want books about family, transportation, multiculturalism, the immigrant experience, books with great illustratio...more
Klem-mari Chimelis
One of my favorite children's books.
Steven R. McEvoy
Tia Isa wants a new car, but with sending money home to her family each month it seems like just a dream. Her brother tells her it is ridiculous but her younger sister wants to help - sometimes dreams come true. The story is wonderful and the illustrations charming. It is a story of hopes, dreams and hard work. The story written from family history is a wonderful tale. Great fun for readers of all ages.

Read the review on my blog Book Reviews and More.
Hatka Prozorac
The book Tia Isa Wants a Car by Meg Medina serves as a good book to read in classroom which include Spanish speaking students. The book is primarily in English, but contains some words in Spanish. Students who are biligual in Spanish and English can read this book alone or with assistance. The book also depicts family structures of Hispanic cultures. This book can be used in Kindergarten-2 grade classrooms.
LaRaie Zimm
This is the story of a girl who helps her aunt buy a car. But it's so much more than that! Together they save enough money to drive to the beach! It's a simple story, and full of rich detail and imagery.It does not surprise me that Meg Medina is a poet. This book is full of poetry! And it is based on a true story of what it means to have a dream and the determination to see it through.

Recommended for children 5+
Teresa Garrett
A young girl helps her aunt save up to buy a car to go to the beach. A new immigrant Tia Isa longs to visit the beach but without a car it is very difficult to do. Sending most of her money back to help family she left behind leaves her without the money she needs. Her niece is determined to help by doing odd jobs around the neighborhood.
Jessica
This is a sweet story about a young girl who figures out a way to help her aunt buy a car. The story touches on family bonds and immigration, but it also highlights the resourcefulness of the child without sounding preachy. My boys really liked it, even though the car is not featured on every page. This book also is available in Spanish.
Teresa
I really liked this this title, with its message of strong family ties and the value of working toward a goal (or two). It's also just a great story, and the illustrations are terrific--vivid and lively, with lots of personality. Spanish words sprinkled throughout make this a natural choice for sharing with a Spanish class.
Jodie
Perseverance pays off in this story. A great way to show that if you wait good things can happen. No instant gratification with this story. Told from a Latina perspective that gives the reader a look at how some families live apart and have to share what they earn and send it back home. Pictures are big and fit the story.
Tricia
One needn't have part of their family overseas yet to join or live in a city without a car to appreciate this story about hard work and cooperation. When Tia Isa wants a car her brother scoffs but her sister chips in and with determination, it is so. My audience enjoyed this story with a warm ending.
Donalyn
Tia Isa wants a car, but most of the money she earns goes back home to help take care of her family and bring them to America. Her young niece decides to help by doing odd jobs around the neighborhood. A sweet family story about moving ahead without forgetting where you came from.
Malissa
I liked this book more than I expected to. I love the repetition and think it's a clear example that writers could understand. The storyline is tight and follows a familiar arc. I could see pairing this with many books including A Chair for my Mother.
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Meg Medina has written for adults and children for over fifteen years. Her stories and poems have appeared in numerous literary magazines. Milagros: Girl from Away (Christy Ottaviano Books: Henry Holt Books for Young Readers) was her first novel for young readers. Meg is also the author of the picture book Tia Isa Wants a Car (Candlewick Press), which earned her the 2012 Ezra Jack Keats New Writer...more
More about Meg Medina...
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