Read and Play: Dr. Seuss Books

Some of Auntie Jess’ favorite children's books

When I was a little kid, I simply LOVED Dr. Seuss stories. I loved the silliness, the rhymes, the nonsense words and the pictures of Dr. Seuss’ make-believe creatures. When I was teaching, I adored the books for all the same reasons. They’re not only excellent for kids who are beginning to read (there’s a lot of repetition and use of word families), but they’re also a ton of fun to read to a class – although your tongue can end up tied in knots if you’re not careful!

In honor of Dr. Seuss’ birthday on March 2, here are my favorite Dr. Seuss stories – and a few activities you can do to make your day extra-silly.

One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish: This is basically a book of funny creatures. From the fish at the beginning of the story, to poor Ned who doesn’t like his little bed, to the Zeep who sleeps at the end of the book, the rhymes are quick and funny and the characters are entertaining. Although there isn’t a plot, per say, this is a book kids will read over and over again. It’s terrific for reinforcing word families, and it’s a wonderfully imaginative read.

The Cat in the Hat: The classic story of what happens when mom steps out and a very entertaining cat steps in!  The Cat in the Hat brings a special kind of chaos to Sally and her brother’s house, but manages to get it all cleaned up just before their mom comes home. This story is impressive because Dr. Seuss wrote it based on a list of words six and seven-year-old children were meant to know. The challenge was to keep the vocabulary simple, while keeping the story engaging. Millions of children will attest to the fact that he was successful!

Oh, the Places You’ll Go: OK, confession time. I can’t get through this story without shedding a few tears. I know that sounds crazy, because the book is mostly very upbeat. It’s just the hopefulness that gets to me every time. I worked with teachers who would read this at the end of the school year to their class, but I knew I’d never get through it without a Kleenex or two (or three). This is a good story for the seven and up crowd, and is a terrific book to give to anyone who’s starting out, graduating, or just going through a transition and needs to know that you believe in them.

Green Eggs and Ham: One of the easiest books for beginning readers,this book is also an incredible tongue-twister (just try reading it at any kind of speed!). If you’ve got a first-grader at home, share this story with them. It’s a super way to reinforce word families, and a great way to introduce the concept of trying new things!

Some Dr. Seuss-inspired activities:

Create your own creature: Dr. Seuss was known for his artistic style. Encourage your child to come up with some creatures of their own. Have your child draw them and name them – the funnier the name, the better! For an extra challenge, see if your child can write a little rhyme about their creature.

Try a new food: Sam-I-Am knew green eggs and ham were delicious – he just needed to convince his friend to try them! Next time you’re grocery shopping with your child, pick a new food to try. Maybe a new fruit or vegetable, or something from another culture – whatever it is, talk to your child about how important it is to try new things.

Cook up some fun -Try these fun Dr. Seuss inspired recipes like green eggs and ham cookies or make a Cat In the Hat Strawberry delight.

Play a rhyming game – This is so easy to do in the car, while waiting in line, at the doctor’s office – anywhere, really! Just come up with a silly line, like “The goose got loose and drank some…” and have your child finish it with a rhyming word. It doesn’t matter if the sentence makes little to no sense – what you’re trying to do is encourage word play, rhyming skills, and imagination.

Make a map – Encourage your child to make a map of all the wonderful places they’ll go. They can make up places (Ice Cream Land!) or actually plot real destinations they’d like to visit (London!). Make a map of your own and compare the two!

No matter how you spend Dr. Seuss’ birthday, I hope it’s fun for you and your little one!

 

About The Author

Jessica Boyd
Jessica was pretty sure she was going to be a teacher, but after graduating she decided to become a writer. She heard about a little site called Webkinz World that hadn’t yet launched, and the rest (as they say) is history. Jessica has written the W Tales, created loveable characters like Plumpy the Hippo, written for Webkinz Newz and been the creative lead for Webkinz Jr. She is thrilled to bring her love of books, crafts, play, and baking to the Ganz Parent Club. When Jess isn’t writing, she’s busy being an auntie and ‘fairy godmother’ to the wonderful kids in her life.

One Response to Read and Play: Dr. Seuss Books

  1. Jennifer says:

    I personaly love Dr. Seuss, some of my best times reading were when my mom would snuggle up and read to me. I am 41 years old and I still remember her reading to me, and then me reading to her and my dad. I will never forget the first time I read Dick and Jane my parents were so proud! Then I read Green Eggs and Ham and my dad cried (I was a big five years old lol). I have selected books that took me on adventures, Peter Pan, Puff The Magic Dragon, Pippi Longstockings ( this was my favorite as I had feckles and red hair. I was greatful when I grew out of that age lol). But I still love to read the same books, Where the Wild Things are, even the funny stories of Amelia Bedelia. Then you can not forget the Shaggy Dog, or Benji I wanted a pup like Benji all of my life and now we have three. The whole point is that Green Eggs and Ham was what gave me a wonderful gift of not just reading, but to fantasize and let my mind daydream. Being a kid was not easy for me, so I know reading and having dreams is even more important to our children today! Webkinz is a computer program with games; however, I listen to my children and they love to decorate their rooms, or find items to collect, talking with friends and my son and my daughter are always finding or dreaming up new items to make webkinz world more fun. I have to say thank you to Webkinz, Ganz and Dr. Suess for the promo for The Lorax, it has opened up a lot of conversations about the books me and my housband grew up with, and the children have picked some of our old favorites to read (and yes we will be at the movie The Lorax)! So thank you for reminding us all to take a moment to read and enjoy life! Good luck to our fellow Webkinz Family hope you are daydreaming and that those dreams come true!