Read Across America Day

Read Across America Day seeks to promote reading. This day is organized by the National Education Association. They created the observance in 1997 with the objective of motivating American children to read. According to the National Education Association, children who spend more time reading do better in school.

Read Across America Day is celebrated annually on March 2nd, in memory of children’s author Dr. Seuss’ birthday.

Dewey Hattingdon. ©Vivian J Grant.
Dewey Hattingdon.

Theodor Seuss Geisel was born in Springfield, Massachusetts, on March 2, 1904, and grew up to write some of the most outrageous and original stories of all time. The inventive rhymes, colorful illustrations, and imaginative characters that populate Dr. Seuss’s books have delighted readers for generations and spawned moviesmuseumstheme parks, and more.

And to Think I Saw It on Mulberry Street, the first of more than 40 stories Geisel published, was turned down 27 times before a publisher finally gave it the green light. 

Theodor “Dr. Seuss” Geisel was born on March 2, 1904 in Springfield, Massachusetts. Photo via Wikimedia Commons

Geisel made an Academy Award-winning documentary film with his wife, Helen Palmer, called Design for Death in 1947. It is about World War II Japan, propaganda, and Pearl Harbor.

One of Geisel’s stories, Gerald McBoing Boing, was made into an animated short and also won an Oscar in 1950.

As a student at Dartmouth College, Geisel was caught drinking gin with a group of friends. Consuming alcohol was still illicit under Prohibition, and Geisel was subsequently banned from participating in extracurricular activities. But the future icon didn’t want to give up writing for the school’s humor magazine, The Jack-O-Lantern. And so, instead of backing down, Geisel changed course and began writing under a pen name: Seuss.

Clearly interested in political cartoons, Geisel took up a job creating Allied propaganda illustrations and videos during World War II. Not only did he draw them, but he also wrote all the content and even included some of his signature rhymes. 

• Read more at “Five Things You Didn’t Know about Dr. Seuss”, Boston Magazine, by Jessica Citronberg, March 1, 2018.

P.S. Sorry for the late posting. — Blog Hattingdon.

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