The Mouse and the Motorcycle

Review and Activities for the book The Mouse and the Motorcycle by Beverly Cleary*This page contains affiliate links. Please read our disclosure policy for more information.


Title: The Mouse and the Motorcycle
Author: Beverly Cleary
Age Range: 8-12 years
Grade Level: 3-7

The Book

The Mouse and the Motorcycle was written by Beverly Cleary in 1965. Ralph is a restless mouse yearning for adventure. He lives with his family in California at the Mountain View Inn. A boy named Keith comes to stay for a few days with his parents and brings along with him the finest toy motorcycle Ralph has ever laid eyes on. After rescuing Ralph from a fall into the wastebasket, Keith allows Ralph to ride the motorcycle around the motel. Ralph has plenty of adventures exploring and even ends up risking his own life to find something Keith desperately needs.

My Thoughts

I’ve read many Beverly Cleary books over the years, including the Ramona series, Ribsy, and Socks. These Ralph Mouse books are full of adventure and fun.  Ralph finds himself in all sorts of trouble throughout the book, which makes readers want to keep reading to the end. I found this to be an amusing and lighthearted read.  My 8 year old loved it!

There are several opportunities to discuss character traits in this story: obedience (or lack of it!), kindness and forgiveness that Keith shows toward Ralph, being adventurous, resourcefulness, and Ralph’s bravery in the last chapters. Although Ralph is certainly disobedient on several occasions, this provides a wonderful opportunity to engage in cause and effect conversations with your child.  Check out the teaching resources below for more ideas.

Beverly Cleary follows up this book with Runaway Ralph, and Ralph S. Mouse.

Resources for Teaching