by Staci Troilo

Dr. Seuss quote

Sunday, March 2 is Dr. Seuss Day, and National Read Across America Day, because it’s Dr. Seuss’s birthday. Schools will celebrate today, March 3. What better way to commemorate the birth of an American icon, a man who loved children and learning so much that he devised a method of storytelling using rhyme and nonsense while combining whimsical characters and important themes to teach the basic skills necessary for success?

Fox in SoxI loved reading Dr. Seuss as a child (and having his work read to me). My favorite book was Fox in Sox because I got to try to say all sorts of crazy tongue twisters while seeing what trouble was on the next page. When I had kids, they thought I was amazing because I didn’t stumble over the words in the book. They didn’t realize I’d had decades of practice. But we all delighted when they were able to say the rhymes in the book without error, and I don’t know who was more proud—them or me—when they stopped reciting the words and actually began reading them.

The LoraxAs much as I loved Fox in Sox, my children loved The Lorax. I read that book to them so many times, I could recite it from memory. It was one of the longer Dr. Seuss stories, but I didn’t mind. Not only are all Dr. Seuss stories easy to read, there are few better feelings than having a daughter in one arm and a son in the other, nestled against you under a blanket while you share a beloved story. Some of my best memories of my kids’ childhoods are of when we read together, and I have Dr. Seuss to thank for some of our favorite books.

Dr. Seuss booksWe had quite an extensive children’s library, and when my kids got older, we gave a lot of the books away. Not the Dr. Seuss books, though. My parents read them to me. I read them to my kids. And my kids and I will read them to my grandkids. Some stories never grow old. I just recently became a great-aunt (I’ve always been a great aunt, but now I’m a great-aunt; see the distinction?), and I can’t wait to start reading Dr. Seuss to my great-niece. We start them early in our family, and we start them right.

See, Dr. Seuss is a hero to writers like me because he not only touched our lives as children, but he continues to impact the lives of the next generation of children every day. I often credit my mother for sparking my interest in writing because of the word games she played with me and the books she read to me, and I still do give her that credit, but I also have to point to Dr. Seuss as the author who first influenced me. It was his work that first piqued my interest in books, and there are probably many other authors out there whose love of books began with Dr. Seuss.

Dr. SeussIt’s Read Across America Day. In honor of Theodor Seuss Geisel (Dr. Seuss), I encourage you to read a book to a child, or read a book for your own pleasure. Nothing could honor him more.

How do you plan to celebrate Read Across America Day?


13 Responses

  1. Fantastic! Yes “Chicken world” and the quacky riabbt are incredible but “Tit” is great too and the mouse more familiar but so charming, I’m going to look at the set…

  2. Staci one of my all time faves…..Dr Seus will continue to be handed down from generation to generation, he had a magical gift to make reading fun. I read them as a child, my children read them too. Like you, we did not throw them out once the children grew past the age of reading them. I still pick one up every now and again and get lost in the whimsical world, full of creatures that taught me that reading was a pleasure.

    • You’re right. It doesn’t matter how old you are. Sometimes you just have to pick up a Dr. Seuss book and experience his world for a little while. There’s something about they whimsy and the joy of those books that calls to us, even as adults. And that’s why his work is timeless, I think. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Reading Dr. Seuss to my daughter was one of my favorite things. McGarigle Zoo was our favorite one. Today I’ll read two excellent books by Indie Authors as well as work on my next novel. Glad to hear about your husband. Mine isn’t a reader either, but when I find a book that I think he’ll like (after all mine, of course), he becomes immersed. I’m in Toronto this week with hubby at a beautiful hotel, but the temps haven’t reached twenty yet and I refuse to go outside and sight see. It’s fine with me. I’m curled up with my Kindle and my laptop. Life is good!

  4. Dr Seuss was/is one of my favorites! I’m a bit sick of being home-bound myself. On the plus side I do have several books patiently waiting for me to crack them open.

    • Even my husband–who, much to my horror, hates to read (he’s always been too active to sit down with a book)–has taken up reading. In honor of Read Across America Day, he’s reading my novel. I think we’ve all grown a bit stir crazy. My book list is not patiently waiting. It’s antsy. I guess it’s a good thing we’re home-bound; I’ll get to it sooner, I suppose!

  5. We’re home-bound due to ice today and hubby just informed me Green Eggs & Ham is NOT his favorite. 🙁 I always thought it was… Now I wonder what other deep dark secrets he harbors. 😉

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