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Millions to Celebrate Read Across America Day, Dr. Seuss's Birthday

Millions to Celebrate Read Across America Day, Dr. Seuss's Birthday

The National Education Association and Dr. Seuss Enterprises will partner up for its 18th annual "Read Across America Day" and celebrate the 111th birthday of Dr. Seuss.

Read Across America has grown into the nation's "largest reading observance with more than 45 million participating, is sponsored by NEA with Dr. Seuss Enterprises, Random House, and more than 30 national partners," according to a press release.

"As educators, we're constantly striving to connect with each child and discover his passions and unlock her potential. NEA's Read Across America is just one of the ways that we reach children with a very important message that reading is fundamental to being a life-long learner," said NEA President Lily Eskelsen Garcia in the release. "With more than 45 million people, young and old, participating every year, NEA's Read Across America is not just a phenomenon—it's a reading movement."

According to the release, "NEA will kick off a special reading celebration in Los Angeles with Eskelsen Garcia and special guest readers."

"NEA's award-winning Cat-a-Van Reading Tour will deliver Seussian-style reading inspiration next week when it hits the road on March 2 for a week long, 3,200-mile trek. Stops along the Cat-a-Van reading route include Tulsa, Oklahoma; Garland, Texas; Dallas, Texas; Pasadena, Texas; Beaumont, Texas; Lafayette, Louisiana; and Baton Rouge, Louisiana," the release said. "The tour ends with an event at the Louisiana Children's Museum in New Orleans on Friday, March 6."

The release said that "more than 9,000 special stovepipe 'reading' hats, books and other goodies to promote reading, totaling more than $100,000, will be distributed during NEA's tour and signature events, which will include visits to high-needs schools. NEA will provide $15,000 in library grants to support the schools visited during the NEA's Cat-a-Van Reading Tour."

The tour will also promote the kick-off of Dr. Seuss's 'Kid, You'll Move Mountains' nationwide search for kids ages 5–18 who excel in the areas of STEAM—Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math," the release said. "NEA has partnered with Dr. Seuss Enterprises on this exciting search that celebrates the 25th anniversary of Dr. Seuss's last book, Oh, the Places You'll Go! This contest recognizes and celebrates children nationwide who are living the message of this book.

"Incorporating STEAM into reading activities builds bridges that strengthen learning all year long," said Fran Bellinger, a physical education teacher in Kaneohe, Hawaii, who heads the NEA's Read Across America Advisory Committee in the release.

According to Eskelsen Garcia, "good education inspires students' natural curiosity, imagination and desire to learn."

"Of all the things we teach our kids, the most important is a love of learning, and when they unlock that potential, oh, the places they'll go!" Garcia said.

Click here for more information about the National Education Association and Read Across America Day. 

Article by Kassondra Granata, Education World Contributor

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