Happy birthday Dr. Seuss

By SAMANTHA MCDONNELL

OBSERVER Staff Writer

SOUTH DAYTON – “If we didn’t have birthdays, you wouldn’t be you. If you’d never been born, well what would you do?”

In honor of Theodor Geisel’s birthday, Pine Valley Elementary students celebrated the famous writer by reading his books. CASS mentors read “Happy Birthday to You!” and “Oh, The Places You’ll Go!” to students in grades K through six. CASS, which stands for Creating a Safer School, mentors are sixth-grade students who go in classrooms and teach their peers and younger students about bullying.

The younger grades were read “Happy Birthday to You!” by mentors and taught about individuality and how everyone is special. The older grades were read “Oh, The Places You’ll Go!” Students discussed how life can sometimes cause anger and appropriate ways to calm down. While the author – widely known as Dr. Seuss’ birthday is not until March 2, students had a week of celebration leading up to Friday’s activities.

“We’ve done (Dr. Seuss Week) for several years,” Elementary Principal Scott Burdick said. “Every year we pick a book or two for CASS mentors to read and develop a theme around the books.”

This year, the theme was birthdays. Students and teachers from classrooms each created a display about birthday tradition from a foreign country. Countries that were on display included, Canada, Ireland, Greece, France, China, Norway, Russia and Egypt, among others. Each grade level took turns walking through the gym and learned about the various traditions. Each classroom also made a pinata in art class. Each class took turns breaking their creation to discover a treasure trove of confetti, candy and Dr. Seuss quotes written on pieces of paper. This year’s celebration was considered the “most elaborate” throughout the years, according to Burdick.

“Every year we do it, (students) look more forward to Dr. Seuss week,” Burdick said.

The activities on Friday started earlier in the week. Students participated in Crazy Sock Monday, Hat Day on Tuesday, Wacky Wednesday and Pajama Day on Thursday. On Friday students were encouraged to wear the colors of one of Dr. Seuss’ most famous character, the Cat in the Hat, by wearing red, black and white. Burdick gave credit for planning this year’s events to a committee chaired by first grade teacher Tracy Raetz.

“They did a great job,” he said.

Comments on this article may be sent to smcdonnell@observertoday.com.