Did you know it’s Read Across America Day? It’s also World Book Day, and the beginning of National Reading Month. I know, all these “holidays” can get a little overwhelming and even feel a bit arbitrary. It seems like, just about any day you pick, you can find somebody somewhere declaring it “National Popcorn Day” (January 19) or “National Alien Abductions Day” (Get ready; it’s March 20 according to this website). It can be pretty exhausting to keep up.
Does any of this actually matter? While I won’t be celebrating National Panic Day on March 9 (hopefully) or No Housework Day on April 7 (OK, I might actually observe that one), I do think Read Across America Day is pretty exciting. For twenty years now, the National Education Association has declared March 2nd – Theodor Geisel a.k.a Dr. Seuss’ birthday – Read Across America Day. Some schools and educational programs celebrate the whole week by reading Dr. Seuss books, serving up delicacies like green eggs and ham, and bringing in special guests like Cat in the Hat and his troublesome sidekicks Thing 1 and Thing 2 (Check out this photo of Levar Burton reading Green Eggs & Ham to 450 kids). Some schools encourage reading through read-a-thons or challenges to read a certain number of books, or bringing in reading buddies, visiting authors, or community readers. Reading Rockets has great resources for classroom and home activities to celebrate with your young readers.
It’s a fun initiative that uses books most kids are familiar with (like Cat in the Hat and the Lorax) to encourage and celebrate reading. Which is what we do at the Children’s Literacy Foundation all year long. Our mission literally includes the words “to inspire a love of reading and writing,” so how could we not celebrate that?
Since 1998, the Children’s Literacy Foundation (or CLiF, as our friends call us) has served more than 400 communities across New Hampshire and Vermont. That’s roughly 85% of the communities in these two small, rural states. We’re reading our way across the Twin States!
Click here to see how our 2017 map is filling in so far! (Our TEN Year of the Book recipients for 2017-2018 will be announced soon; meanwhile, we’re still accepting applications for our Rural Libraries, Summer Readers, and At-Risk Children grants. Apply now to put your town on the map!)
If you want to help CLiF reach low-income, at-risk, and rural young readers and writers in all corners of both states, please donate today to help us Read Across NH & VT! And if you’re unable to make a donation right now, there are other ways you can help. Thank you for supporting this important work and helping us read across our corner of America.
What was your favorite Dr. Seuss book as a child? How about your favorite book, period? Can you think of a way to celebrate it today – reading it with a child in your life, rereading it yourself, giving a child in need a copy (CLiF gladly accepts donations of NEW unmarked books for our book giveaways!)…[insert your awesome ideas here]?