“Oh, the Places You’ll Go!” Every year on March 2nd, the National Education Association observes Theodor Geisel (Dr. Seuss)’s birthday by celebrating Read Across America Day. Started in 1997, the educational initiative is an endeavor to inspire students to read all year long. But March 2nd is a day for celebration and inspiration across the nation.
The National Education Association wanted to celebrate reading on a national scale. And they thought it would be a great idea to have it on the birthday of the great children’s author Dr. Seuss. This year would be Dr. Seuss’ 119th birthday. Perhaps known best for the Cat in the Hat, Green Eggs & Ham and How the Grinch Stole Christmas, he wrote and illustrated more than 60 well-loved children’s books. So it makes sense that Dr. Seuss is the figurehead for National Read Across America Day.
Reading is vital to a child’s education. According to Pearson, reading for fun at an early age can help improve test scores as well as “develop a broader vocabulary, increased general knowledge and a better understanding of other cultures.”
Students who don’t read proficiently by 3rd grade are four times more likely to drop out of high school. This Harvard Graduate School of Education SlideShare shows what parents and educators can do to promote reading for fun for students of all ages.
The National Education Association created a digital calendar to help plan out reading initiatives for the year. They offer a wide variety of books each month for readers of all levels. These suggestions are meant to “celebrate a nation of diverse readers…that represent an array of experiences and cultures.” Each book suggestion also includes activities and resources to help create great learning experiences around them.
How will you celebrate Read Across America? We’d love to hear from you about how you are inspiring your student to read for fun!