Cleveland State will host the 11th annual Happy Birthday Dr. Seuss celebration on Saturday, March 8. The event will take place from 10 a.m. - 1 p.m. in Cleveland State’s Library and is sponsored by the Early Childhood Education program and the Library. The celebration is organized by students in the language and literacy development class.
“This is our 11th year and we are looking forward to another fun-filled day filled for the children," said Suzanne Wood, CSCC associate professor and coordinator of Early Childhood Education. “We are delighted to be able to give every child a hard-back book through the generous donation of the Kiwanis Club of Cleveland, and we could not offer this free literacy event without the donations of individuals and business in the community. And if I may quote Dr. Seuss, ‘The more that you read the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go!’ This is our hope that this day will focus on and encourage children and families to read together.”
This year’s event will honor Seuss’ ABC: An Amazing Alphabet Book. This book stars two anthropomorphic dogs named Ichabod and Izzy as they journey through the alphabet and meet characters that begin with each letter.
As with previous events, special guests will include Dr. Seuss’s most well-known characters, the Cat in the Hat, Thing One and Thing Two and the Grinch. Both children and adults are familiar with the uncontrollable and entertaining Cat from Dr. Seuss’s book, The Cat in the Hat. The Cat is accompanied by the twin mischief-makers, Thing One and Thing Two, and together they bounce from one catastrophic fun-making adventure to another. The Grinch, the title character from The Grinch Who Stole Christmas, is a cynical cave-dweller who has a sudden change of heart when he realizes the real meaning of Christmas.
Happy Birthday Dr. Seuss is free to children of all ages; however, all children must be accompanied by an adult. Each child will receive a goody bag and may participate in literacy-related activities assisted by students in Cleveland State’s language and literacy development class.
According to Professor Wood, the Kiwanis Club of Cleveland has generously given money to purchase books for the event, and members of the Kiwanis club will be there to give a free hard back Dr. Seuss book to every child that attends. Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library will also be on hand. The Imagination Library is a nonprofit organization that promotes early childhood literacy by giving free age-appropriate books to children from birth to age five around the country.
Literacy-related activities will be set up both inside and outside the library, and the young participants will be entertained with readings of Dr. Seuss’s stories, including some readings in Spanish and German.
Other activities will include face painting, hat making and music and movement. Refreshments and door prizes will also be a part of the celebration.
The Early Childhood Education Program at Cleveland State began in 1999 out of an initiative from the Tennessee Board of Regents requiring that all community colleges in the state have an early childhood program. Students may receive a Child Development Associate (CDA) designation by completing a four-course option and related credentialing procedures or may pursue an Associate of Applied Science degree by completing the two-year, 60-credit-hour program.
Cleveland State also has transfer agreements with many area colleges that allow students to transfer and complete their degree to teach pre-K through third grade.
Those interested in more information about the Happy Birthday Dr. Seuss event or the Early Childhood Education Program should contact Suzanne Wood, program coordinator, at 472-7141, Ext. 282.