Seuss-themed reading parties are the celebration of
choice for many of the millions of participants in NEAs
Read Across America, but if you’re looking for more ways
to celebrate, consider some of these tried and true ideas.
Spirit Day for Reading
Mark Read Across America Day with Seuss spirit. Have
a school-wide Crazy Hat Day, Wear-Red-and-White Day,
Foxiest Socks Day, Pajama Day, Wear-Your-Clothes-
Inside-Out Day, or Come-As-Your-Favorite-Seuss-
Character Day. Be sure to tie books into your festive-wear
theme with read alouds of related titles.
A school-wide door decorating activity gives everyone
a chance to show enthusiasm for reading—from the
kindergartners to the school nurse. Door décor can
feature elements from favorite books or be totally
Dr. Seuss themed. Get students involved by using
photographs or student drawn self portraits embellished
with Cat in the Hat hats, Thing 1 and Thing 2 blue hair,
or notable features from other favorite Seuss characters.
Don’t forget to include a reversible door hanger—Do Not
Disturb, We’re Reading! / Come In and READ with Us!
Cook Up Some Reading Fun
Serve up some green eggs and ham on Read Across
America Day or make these tasty toppers: Cat in the
Hat pattern snacks! Provide kids with wooden skewers
(or small straws) and red and white foods: banana and
strawberry slices; raspberries and mini marshmallows;
red pepper and white cheese. Have kids alternate the red
and white foods as they put them on the skewer then let
them enjoy the snack as you read aloud.
A Chorus of Readers
It’s hard not to join in on a reading of a Dr. Seuss book.
His inviting rhymes and rhythms are hard to resist!
18 | KNOW • Volume 15 Issue 3
Reading aloud in unison with a whole class or large group
is great reading motivation and helps build students’
fluency and self-confidence. Plan choral readings of Dr.
Seuss titles for the classroom or school-wide assembly.
Use a projector to display the books so everyone can see
the book and read aloud.
Sharing what’s inside a book with younger kids is great
fun for older readers. Pair students in early elementary
grades with older readers from upper grades, middle or
high school. Prepare older students to read aloud and
work with their younger buddies on a reading related
craft such as making bookmarks or writing books of their
Literary Field Trip
Plan a field trip to your local library or bookstore. Work
with the librarian or bookseller to develop a guided
experience for your students that includes time for both
exploring and hearing books read aloud. Local libraries
and museums also often host exhibitions that focus on
children’s book authors and bookstores have authors
for public readings and events. Take advantage of their
efforts and offerings.
Online Reading Action
Bring readers and reading fun to kids through your
Internet connection. The Skype an Author Network can
help you plan a virtual visit with an author for a classroom
or a school-wide assembly.
With Google Lit Trips students can step into stories
they’ve read and take the journeys of characters from
famous literature on the surface of Google Earth. Or you
can “Read Across America” with a video call to share a
story with classroom or guest reader in another part of
The Reading Challenge
Many schools use Read Across America Day to kick off
a school-wide reading challenge. And there’s nothing
like the promise of an adult to make a fool of himself/
herself to inspire readers to read to great lengths. To
make the reading challenge work, the challenge must
be challenging, but doable, and the incentive, hilarious.
Some themes to consider:
Human Hot Fudge Sundae.
Challenge kids to read food-themed titles with the reward
of turning an authority figure into dessert—a human
sundae covered with chocolate syrup and whipped
If kids meet the challenge of reading a certain number of
humorous books, an authority figure dresses as a clown
for a day.
Teacher-Recommended Activity Ideas
for NEA’s Read Across America