Looking for a reason to make this coming weekend memorable for your child? Celebrate Dr. Seuss! March 2 is Dr. Seuss’ birthday. Random House and the National Education Association (NEA) are urging adults to take time to participate in Read Across America on March 1 (the day is marked on the school day closest to March 2) and read to a child. In addition, many elementary schools across the United States celebrate Dr. Seuss’ birthday each year because of his unique appeal to young children.
Those who have read my blogs on literacy for early learners are well aware of my affection for Dr. Seuss books! His emphasis on rhyme is a great exercise in phonemic awareness. Phonemic awareness, simply put, is the ability to hear sounds in spoken language. It gets more complex when you understand that there is a sequence to hearing different sounds. However, starting with rhyme is a key element in learning to read, and Dr. Seuss is all about rhyme!
Here are six of my favorite Dr. Seuss books, and an explanation for why you should read any of these to a kindergarten, 1st, or 2nd grade student. Or if your child is already a good reader, he should read aloud to you!
- Ten Apples Up on Top has great rhyme, while teaching a child all about counting and the combinations of ten.
- Hop on Pop features rhyme for beginning readers using simple sentences.
- There’s a Wocket in my Pocket uses rhyme to teach about habitats and living in harmony.
- I Wish That I Had Duck Feet explores self-esteem and accepting differences.
- The Lorax is a lesson on the importance of saving our environment.
- Green Eggs and Ham teaches children about trying something before deciding if they like it or not.
So celebrate this beloved author’s birthday this coming weekend. Add a fun activity. For example, after reading Green Eggs and Ham surprise your child with a green eggs and ham breakfast—mix some ground up parsley with a bit of water into eggs before scrambling.
Happy Birthday, Dr. Seuss!