This art-related series was created to enlighten, and enable parents of elementary age children to build the foundation of art literacy needed for success once their students enter a middle school art program.  First, we presented the seven elements of art. In this series, we study a variety of artists and their significant contributions to the art world!

"Read Across America" is an initiative on reading created by the National Education Association that began in 1997. The first week in March is celebrated as “Dr. Suess” week in honor of Dr. Suess’s birthday on March 2. Dr. Suess, also known as Theodore Suess Geisel, created a writing style that has metamorphosed into its own separate category of unique writing; coupled with a manipulation of everyday words and names to achieve rhymes or desired beats per line.

In honor of Dr. Suess I have written this month’s article in a similar Dr. Suess style.

 

Dr. Suess

Way long ago in a far away place,

in Spingfield, Massachusetts, there was born a small face.

A face that would change the way children would read,

with nonsensical rhymes,

they would learn with great speed. 

His born given name was Theodore Suess Geisel,

 but all of his friends called him “Ted”, a mere trifle.

When Ted was a boy,

he lived six blocks away,

from the zoo that he loved,

where some days he would stay.

He would study the animals and then come straight home,

and draw funny renditions on the walls of his home.

The creatures were funny, like a duck with large wings,

he’d give each a new name like a “Schnump” or a “Shmeeg”.

Teds mother and sister were great with words too.

They’d create funny poems, that would go with Ted’s zoo.

His grand-dad was German and came to the states,

and had a beer business that turned out to be great!

His father invented new things that gave cheer

his biggest invention kept the flies out of beer.

Ted’s life went on nicely until World War II

When Americans thought that all Germans weren’t good.

Poor Ted, he was bullied and others threw stones;

But his love for the country, grew and grew, more and more.

A victory garden he planted outside,

And he sold the most war bonds than any kid of his kind.

When World War II ended, as a Sophomore in school,

Ted drew fantastic creatures for the school paper too.

These political drawings showed a passionate side,

Of injustice and unequal things people hide.

To not get in trouble, when he wrote of such things,

He signed his name T.S. LeSieg and more things.

In college, at Dartmouth, he was well on his way,

to becoming the “Dr.” he is known for today!

He wrote for the paper and was very well liked,

til one evening he was caught,

partying into the night.

He was kicked off the paper,

So he then changed his name,

to the now well known “Suess” which was his middle name.

His first children’s book, took some time to be published

After place after place said his rhymes were just rubbish.

Just when Suess would give up and was on his way home,

To burn up his book in the fireplace at home.

Who should he meet as a sign of the times,

But a publisher friend who loved all Suess’s rhymes.

It was at VanGard press that Suess soon found his home,

Writing book after book that all rhymed to a nose!

Ted’s big break to fame came in year 57,

When an article published raised cane to high heaven.

It seems that the children in schools at the time,

Weren’t learning the words that were important at that time.

The schools came to Suess and asked that he write,

 a book that had all the words that were right.

“The Cat in the Hat” came to be on that day,

And now all of Suess’s 60 books are to stay!

His pictures are goofy, his stories are sweet.

When he teaches us all about trees and the “Schneet”.

He’s won Emmys, and Grammys and a Pulitzer Prize,

Which should win him respect in anyone’s eyes.

 

Epilogue:

Dr. Suess died on September 24th, 1991 at the age of 87. Although he never had children of his own, he adored his two step daughters. They created the “Amazing World of Dr. Suess” museum, in Springfield, Massachusetts. Each year, in March, Schools around the globe celebrate “Read Across America” and honor Dr. Suess by reading Dr. Suess books and dressing up as their favorite Suess books characters.

 

   Dr. Suess “Fun Facts”

  1. Dr. Seuss used Dr. as part of his name because his father always wanted him to be a doctor.

  2. His children’s books have been translated in over 15 languages.

  3. Dr. Seuss once said that the character the Grinch is based on himself!

  4. Dr. Seuss is credited for the first person using the word Nerd.  He used the word in his book If I Ran the Zoo in 1950.

  5. The book Green Eggs and Ham only contains 50 different words.  He wrote the book based on a bet.  A publisher bet him that he couldn’t write a book using few words.  Dr. Seuss won the bet!

 

 

Online Resources:

             Celebrate Dr. Seuss with a visit to this site where students can explore a variety of games, activities, and information about favorite Seuss characters such as the Cat in the Hat and the Grinch! http://www.seussville.com/#/home

    

At the Activity Village your student can learn how to draw the Lorax,Thing 1 and Thing 2 and more! https://www.activityvillage.co.uk/learn-to-draw-dr-seuss-characters

 

A library card is your ticket to other worlds! Go and visit the Wayne County Library, get your very own library card and visit Dr. Suess’s world! Learn more about the Wayne County Library and all their wonderful programs here: http://threeriverslibraries.org/wordpress-dev/library-locations/wayne-county-public-library/

My Pre-K thru 8th grade students created a "Who-Ville" collaborative mural that turned out super cool! Then, when the other students had a field trip I took the opportunity to let the 2md and 3rd grade class create their very own whoville's! Check out their work below!

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