David City Public Schools celebrate Read Across America Week

March 6, 2019

Monday was “The Cat in the Hat”, Tuesday was “Green Eggs and Ham,” Thursday was “Oh the Places You Will Go” and Friday was “The Lorax.” These were the daily themes last week at Bellwood Elementary during Read Across America week.

The week-long celebration was started by the National Education Association in 1997, and the organization uses Dr. Seuss’ birthday on March 2 as a tie-in. The event also kicked off National Reading Month in March. The week of Feb. 25 through March 1 was full of Dr. Seuss-themed events and activities for students at Bellwood and David City elementary schools.

Bellwood sixth-grade teacher Katie Rose said the goal for the week was to inspire students to read more. Many of the themes prevalent throughout the various Dr. Seuss books related to friendship and acceptance. Rose said Bellwood had dress-up days, trivia, bingo and other reading-related activities for the special occasion.

“It’s an annual activity that we do every year,” Rose said. “It gives us an opportunity to do some fun activities in the classroom and just encourage more family reading and activities around reading.”

Bellwood second-grade student Colston Schmit said his favorite part of the week was the trivia questions - he was able to answer two correctly. For the school’s wacky dress day on Wednesday, the student wore his shirt backward and his shoes on the wrong feet. He said his favorite Dr. Seuss story is “One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish.”

Bellwood kindergarten teacher Lora Jewell said she incorporates Dr. Seuss into her students’ writing exercises. She said it encourages students to be creative.

“It helps with the rhyming and their writing, as well,” Jewell said. “We do a lot of different kinds of writing, but it’s fun to study an author like Dr. Seuss, too, who can make completely random stories and make them fun and make up words and characters. It’s fun to promote that kind of writing workshop as well, not just the reading.”

Rose said the goal of the week was “to promote reading in the classroom and at home, and the enjoyment of reading. You don’t just have to read to learn. You can read for entertainment, as well.”

To finish off the week on March 1, it was pajama day for students at David City Elementary. Students also participated in activities like reading with flashlights and making green eggs with ham. For Bellwood, students wore fake mustaches in honor of Dr. Seuss’ famed character from “The Lorax.”

Eric Schucht is a reporter for the Banner-Press. Reach him via email at eric.schucht@lee.net.