We can all use some “good innocent laughter” right about now. Luckily, author John R. Erickson is helping out by reading excerpts online from “Hank the Cowdog,” his classic children’s book series. The books take place in the Texas Panhandle and are told from the perspective of Hank, a dog who considers himself the “Head of Ranch Security.” When he’s not herding cattle, he’s helping out in the ranch in other ways, including getting into hijinks, often of his own making . 
Hank the Cowdog
Source: Amazon

“Hank the Cow Dog” Story Time

Erickson is no stranger to live readings, since he’s been reading his books in schools for decades. He also narrates all “Hank the Cowdog” audio books (many of which are free right now on Audible).  But this online virtual story time is a little bit different. Instead of a classroom, Erickson’s reading is filmed as he relaxes outside while cowdogs play and frolick in the pasture behind him. Kids will not only love the humor and mystery of the stories, but also watching the playful dogs as Erickson reads. 

Listen in to the Classic ‘The Boxer” Scene

Erickson kicked off his virtual story time with one of the most iconic scenes in his Hank books. He starts with “The Boxer,” a chapter in his very first book, the 1982 “The Original Adventures of Hank the Cowdog.” https://www.facebook.com/officialhankthecowdog/photos/a.219443078070191/3274846795863122/?type=3&theater In this scene, Hank sneaks a ride into town aboard his owner’s truck and then gets into a bit of a tiff with a not-so-nice boxer in the parking lot. Parents and kids alike can listen in on YouTube, where all of Erickson’s readings will be shared. With more than 70 books and short stories, Erickson definitely has plenty to pick from!
Hank the cowdog
Screenshot: YouTube

More Fun & Games with “Hank the Cowdog”

While kids wait for the next story time installment, the “Hank the Cowdog” website has a whole lot of activities and resources for kids. They can play online games, like “ranch memory” and “whack a coyote.” Printables also give them an inside peek into life at the ranch. I definitely recommend printing off a ranch map so the kids can get a picture of where all of John R. Erickson’s stories take place as he reads. For the kids who can’t get enough of Hank and his antics, be sure to sign them up for the exclusive Security Force. They’ll love being a part of Hank’s stories! 


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