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Today is Theodor “Dr. Seuss” Geisel’s birthday! With their whimsical illustrations and trademark Seussian silliness, Dr. Seuss’s books have inspired generations of children to become lifelong readers. They’re a staple in my children’s library and were in mine growing up.
Learn more about Theodor “Dr. Seuss” Geisel and find all his books in the Dr. Seuss Amazon Author Store.
Here are some favorites:
The Lorax – Long before saving the earth became a global concern, Dr. Seuss warned against mindless progress and the danger it posed to the earth’s natural beauty. The Lorax is an ecological warning that still rings true today amidst the dangers of clear-cutting, pollution, and disregard for the earth’s environment.
Horton Hears a Who and Horton Hatches the Egg – Surely among the most lovable of all Dr. Seuss creations, Horton the Elephant represents kindness, trustworthiness, loyalty and perseverance. Now, the two books that introduced the heroic Horton to the world – Horton Hears A Who! and Horton Hatches the Egg – are available together for the first time in the Dr. Seuss’s Horton Collection Boxed Set.
Green Eggs and Ham – We can’t leave out Sam I Am now, can we?
A great companion of any Dr. Seuss books is the Green Eggs and Ham Cookbook with its Seuss-inspired recipes.
What is your favorite Dr. Seuss book? Comment below and let us know!
If you have a reluctant reader at home or one of those children who say, “Why do I need to go to school?” share Amadi’s Snowman with them. Written by Katia Novet Saint-Lot and illustrated by Dimitrea Tokunbo, this wonderful book for children ages four to eight shows why learning to read is important.
Amadi’s Snowman takes place in Nigeria. Amadi’s mother wants him to learn how to read. But Amadi being a proud, young Igbo man, wants to be a businessman. Why work in an office when trading in the marketplace is so much fun?
Sneaking out of his reading lesson, he goes to the market and sees a older boy reading in a book stall. It’s a story about a snowman, a strange white creature with a carrot for a nose. Amadi is intrigued and wants to learn more. Slowly Amadi discovers how reading can open up a new world to him. The more he could read, the more he would know.
I loved Amadi’s Snowman. Not only is it a beautiful book and a sweet story, but it shows the magic of reading and how it’s the key to knowing so much about the world and its wonders. Younger children will enjoy the illustrations, story and characters. (Lucie said she loved it, too.) Teachers, parents and grandparents will appreciate the message.
More about the author and illustrator:
- Amadi’s Snowman author, Katia Novet Saint-Lot, used to live in Nigeria where her husband’s work for UNICEF took them. You can learn more about Nigeria at her website. She and her family now live in India.
- The illustrator, Dimitrea Tokunbo, brings to life the day-to-day experiences of life in Nigeria, where her father grew up. She’s an accomplished author, too.
As my kids get older, it seems like it’s harder to find the time to read to them. By the time dinner dishes are put away, and backpacks are packed for the next day, it’s pass everyone’s bedtime and there is no time to read. While there is no substitute for a parent and child getting together to read, there are sources out there to help fill in the cracks.
The Smart Television Alliance
The Smart Television Alliance a great online source for parents and caregivers to easily find television programming that is educational and entertaining for kids, on the parents’ schedules. They’re also a committed supporter of the NEA’s annual Read Across America project. They even had some of our kids’ favorite TV characters give them reading suggestions.
The Smart Television Alliance has partnered with the Disney Channel to produce a Public Service Announcement to help impart the importance of reading to children everywhere. The Disney Channel asked Super Bunny, star of the new Playhouse Disney series “Bunnytown,” to read his favorite bedtime story to a friend – A Boy and His Bunny. You can see the video below.
kidthing released an animated digital version of Horton Hears A Who! by Dr. Seuss for Read Across America Day. It’s available for free exclusively on for download on kidthing. The pages come to life on your computer screen with animation, narration and sound effects. Parents also have the option to turn the sound off and read the book aloud. It’s very slick but as a parent you are totally in control to what books you’re downloading.
kidthing is a secure internet-based global learning platform for children, parents, teachers, family and friends that delivers the next generation Internet-based learning environment through its proprietary distribution, publishing and social networking platform. Parents and teachers can purchase, customize and personalize content for kids and can share this in private sharing groups. Publishers and content creators around the world can make their works available in the kidthing store in an enhanced electronic format. It’s sort of an online version of Kindle for children’s books with social networking features.
There are many videos of books from Rosemary Wells to Curious George available on YouTube (probably bootleg versions, I’m guessing. I’ve created a playlist on YouTube of some kid friendly titles for my kids to watch. (I’d love to post a video here, but it keeps goofing up my blog.)
According to the Jenkins Group:
- 58% of the US adult population never reads another book after high school.
- 42% of college graduates never read another book.
- 80% of US families did not buy or read a book last year.
- 70% of US adults have not been in a bookstore in the last five years.
- 57% of new books are not read to completion.
So what are they doing? Watching TV! (Among other things.) So no matter if you’re for or against the writer’s strike, your television viewing habits could be affected. So why not pick up a good book instead?
Family Activities for the TV-less
There are lots of book suggestions here at A Readable Feast including YA (young adult) titles. You can look on the right sidebar for books I haven’t reviewed yet like Bobbie Dazzler or Little Skink’s Tail. Or check out November 2006’s posts for Thanksgiving and holiday book ideas.
Did you see the Target toy catalog in last Sunday’s paper? The kids and I were excited about all the new board games out, especially Monopoly Disney Pixar Edition. Why wait for Christmas?
How about cooking as a family? FamilyFun.com has a whole bunch of kid-friendly Thanksgiving cooking ideas like Tiny Turkey Dinner Cupcakes and Tom Turkey Nuggets.
Lots of good new movies out there to rent or buy like Meet the Robinsons, too.
But if you must watch TV (and I understand – we all want to relax and “jell” for awhile) how about introducing kids to classics like the Andy Griffith Show or the original Star Trek? Both are in reruns on various local and cable stations. There’s always educational TV like the Discovery Channel, PBS, and the History Channel.
How is your family going to handle the writer’s strike?
- Watch reruns of our favorite TV shows.
- Watch shows we don’t normally watch on TV.
- Watch sports on TV.
- Do family activities like play games, cook, go to the community pool, or make a craft.
- Rent lots of movies.
- Turn of the TV and READ.
Though it was a challenge at first – What? We’re going to sit quietly and read books? No way! – Nathan’s and Lucie’s enthusiasm grows daily for our summer reading program. So far we’ve logged over 480 minutes per child. I’m participating in my library’s adult reading program and have read three novels so far.
They’re enjoying the books and the visits to the library. (Though sometimes it’s hard to get them to leave. I had to carry a screaming Lucie out of the library last week.) They’re also enjoying the rewards they’re getting from the library – ice cream at Good Times, kid’s meals at IHOP, and pizza from Pizza Hut.
So, how’s your summer reading program going? Do you need a little inspiration? Then check out these links:
- Scholastic’s Summer Reading Buzz – If you haven’t already done so, become a member. The site also features lots of help for parents including suggested reading lists and reading tips.
- Woman’s Day Magazine – This is a great resource for article on how to raise a reader or be a good role model for your child. Don’t forget to enter this month’s contest to win a Scholastic Pocket Reference Set.
- How to Raise Children Who Love to Read – By Carol Boles at interactive DAD Magazine – If you’re wondering why some children grow up to become successful readers and possess a love for reading, the answer is simple. Their parents have made a commitment to their reading development.
- Reading Alone Does Not Turn Children Into Bookworms – by interactive DAD Magazine – , Study Finds Genes, not just environment, play a large role in determining whether children will be bookworms.
- Turn Your Child Into A Reader – by interactive DAD Magazine – School is out and it’s the perfect time to plan a summer reading adventure for your child. The good news is planning that adventure will be very easy.
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