For the past five years, Embracing Dr. Seuss Differences Day has touched the lives of tens of thousands of elementary school students throughout Sarasota and Manatee counties. The objective has been to mark the birthday of Theodor Seuss Geisel—and to carry on his message by stimulating student-mentor conversations about diversity, bullying, and respect. In 2018, with the help of 350 volunteers, this initiative reached 6,700 students from 47 elementary schools and provided more 7,000 books for students and classrooms. This massive outreach reflects a collaboration between EOD and the Suncoast Campaign for Grade-Level Reading, a joint effort supported by The Patterson Foundation, the Community Foundation of Sarasota County, United Way Suncoast and an anonymous family foundation. The program’s profound impact earned national honors when the Campaign for Grade-Level Reading recognized it as a “Best Event” at its All-America City Awards Ceremony in 2016.
What better way to celebrate the birthday of such a beloved writer of children’s books than reading to a child? Dr. Seuss epitomizes a love of children and learning. His use of rhyme makes an effective tool for teaching young children the basic skills needed to be successful in an ever changing world. When we celebrate Dr. Seuss and reading, we send a clear message to our children that reading is fun and important.
Book selections below are designed to stimulate conversations regarding diversity, bullying, character education, and respect for others.
Pre-K – My Many Colored Days – Using a spectrum of vibrant colors and a menagerie of animals, this unique book is a wonderful way to talk with children about their feelings.
Kindergarten – The Cat in the Hat – The children learn how to be "upstanders" against The Cat and his scheming tricks.
1st Grade – Green Eggs and Ham – All about trying new things, when those things seem strange and unappealing.
2nd Grade – Horton Hears a Who – After hearing a cry for help, Horton vows to protect the Whos.
3rd Grade – The Lorax – Dr. Seuss pleas for the planet.
For more information, please contact Brenna Wilhm via EMAIL.
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