Thursday, March 1, 2012

Happy Birthday, Dr. Seuss! Celebrating with our students!

We are excited to celebrate Dr. Seuss's birthday - Friday, March 2nd - at our school. As part of Read Across America, students at Emerson School are sharing their love for all things Dr. Seuss.

Our 2nd graders have been practicing reading aloud Dr. Seuss's books, and will perform some of their favorite excerpts for the whole school at our monthly assembly Friday. Other 2nd graders are getting ready to make a video montage with their favorite Seuss Snippets - ranging from One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish to The Sneetches.

Our kindergarteners are connecting with John Muir School across town through a video chat. They'll sing "Happy Birthday, Dr. Seuss" to a group of 2nd graders from John Muir. The 2nd graders will read aloud Green Eggs and Ham for our kindergartners. It's a big deal for the 2nd graders - reading in front of the camera for our kindergartners. They've been practicing all week.

Another group of kindergartners are excited to try the Dr. Seuss iPad book apps from Oceanhouse Media. We've had a lot of fun with the 1st and 2nd graders reading these, and it's time for the kindergartners to try them out. We will start by having them reading Dr. Seuss's Beginner Book Collection - which features classics such as Cat in the Hat, Mr. Brown Can Moo, and Fox in Sox.

iPad book app from Oceanhouse Media

This is a great collection to try - each book can either work as the interactive "Read to Me", where the story is narrated as children swipe pages, or in the autoplay format for younger children. Kids I've watched particularly like being able to tap images and have the words zoom up at them. The Oceanhouse Media apps are an excellent way to have fun reading while developing essential early literacy skills such as rhyming, word association and letter sounds.

To celebrate the release of the movie and also Seuss’s birthday, Oceanhouse Media is dropping the price of its book app of The Lorax to 99 cents.

Dr. Seuss books are wonderful to read aloud - to young children just absorbing the early sense of rhythm and rhyme, as well as for school children learning to read. Some 2nd graders looked at me, wondering if these were too easy to read. But the Dr. Seuss rhythm and rhyme helps build their fluency and expression, even if they can already read/decode all the words.

Are you celebrating Dr. Seuss's birthday with your children? You might have fun with this 20-page activity book, full of reading, math, and most importantly, fun! My Very Own Dr. Seuss Activity Book is free, courtesy of

Above all, have fun and share the gift of reading with a child in your life!

I have to give a special shout-out to my colleague Steve Healey, librarian with good humor and a twinkle in his eye, over at John Muir School, also in the Berkeley Unified School District. Neither of us have tried video chats with students before, but he's always game to try something new! Thanks, Steve, for trying this out with us! And a special thanks to the amazing teachers at Emerson School, who are game to try out all sorts of things with us in the library - whether it's getting the kids excited for a Dr. Seuss party, or experimenting with iPad book apps, or connecting with classes across town on video chat. Thanks to all of them.

©2012 Mary Ann Scheuer, Great Kid Books


  1. I bet the students will love that video chat! Great idea!

  2. Cool. I am sure students is going to enjoy great benefits out of it.