There are always places to go: a friend's house, school, or even your favorite restaurant. How many ways can you think of to get there? Someone might drive you in a car. Perhaps you ride on a bus. Maybe you use your bike. Whatever method of travel you thought about was probably a form of transportation.

One of the first forms of transportation was animals. Strong animals such as horses, oxen, mules, and even camels helped to carry people and their possessions to different places.

But transportation changed dramatically once the wheel was developed. The wheel allowed for a wide variety of new inventions. Some of these included chariots, wheelbarrows, bicycles, and wagons. These new vehicles helped to transport heavy loads.

As towns grew bigger, railroads were built. Trains could carry large amounts of people and goods from one place to another. Most early trains were powered by steam from burning coal, wood, or oil.

Transportation is not limited to the ground. People can also travel through the air. Enormous balloons were the first form of air transportation. These balloons were filled with hot air that let them rise high up into the sky.

As more people wanted to fly, airplanes were invented. The first airplanes could not travel very far. Now, many planes have powerful engines. People today can travel great distances in a short amount of time.

Newer technology has even let us travel into space. Rockets and space shuttles allow people to explore outer space and do experiments in low gravity environments.

There will always be a need for transportation. Whether you want to go to a nearby store or embark on a long trip, different forms of transportation are available to you. What do you think will be the next invention in transportation?

Lexile: 700-800
Words: 297
Genre: Nonfiction, Informational
Read time: 2:02
Printable version
Story questions
Read by: Brian James
Illustration by: Nataliia Natykach