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Young girl pointing at text as she reads aloud
Maria Salvadore
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Maria Salvadore

Cat on the loose so get ready for Read Across America Day

Is the cat (as in Cat in the Hat) coming to town near you? Three Cat-a-Vans (opens in a new window) will start their tours today to promote Read Across America, the national celebration of Dr. Seuss’s March 2nd birthday.

It seems only fitting that the celebration of Dr. Seuss’s (opens in a new window) birthday involves reading. This is the man who is credited with writing the first books with a limited number of words that would actually stimulate beginning readers.

The first was the Cat in the Hat (opens in a new window) — now an emblem for Seuss’s creative genius later followed by my personal favorite of the beginner books is Green Eggs and Ham (opens in a new window)(both Random). This silly book — written with only 50 words, by the way — still makes me chuckle even after lots (and lots and lots) of readings.

It’s interesting that books with a purpose (these so-called easy readers), can motivate as well as provide success with so few words. I think it’s the outrageous humor and the pure silliness in both picture and word that captures readers. And so will the life of Dr. Seuss.

The biography of Theodor Geisel makes a great read aloud (or read alone). Katherine Krull’s picture book biography of the doctor, The Boy on Fairfield Street (opens in a new window) (Random House) presents a life that may inspire other young artists.

So, look for the Cat-a-Van in your area. And let’s celebrate Seuss and reading on March 2nd — and beyond — by reading across America!

About the Author

Reading Rockets’ children’s literature expert, Maria Salvadore, brings you into her world as she explores the best ways to use kids’ books both inside — and outside — of the classroom.

Publication Date
February 29, 2008

Related Topics

Fluency, Parent Engagement