Dr Seuss’ birthday is coming up on 2 March and I have Dr Seuss-based lessons planned for Library throughout the week. This will also be my first week with the students this year (hopefully) as I injured my foot a couple of weeks ago and am hoping for the go-ahead from my physio to go back to work in March!
EDITED 23/02/2021 TO ADD: Mary Verdun, a member of a Facebook Group where I posted the Stage 3 slideshow posted a link to the following paper which looks at racism, anti-semitism and orientalism in the work of Dr Seuss/Theodore Giesel. It is an interesting read and raises questions that I am thinking through and which may change my decision on whether to use these plans next week. The paper’s citation is: Ishizuka, Katie and Stephens*, Ramón (2019) “The Cat is Out of the Bag: Orientalism, Anti-Blackness, and White Supremacy in Dr. Seuss’s Children’s Books,” Research on Diversity in Youth Literature: Vol. 1 : Iss. 2 , Article 4.
Available at: https://sophia.stkate.edu/rdyl/vol1/iss2/4.
For Kindergarten, I will be focusing on rhyme and onomatopoeia with the entertaining Mr Brown Can Moo, Can You? Last year’s group seemed to enjoy this book and it is good to dramatise and use with a bit of call-and-response, which suits the younger As a reading response, I will be having them assemble and colour some flipbooks I found here: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Flip-Book-for-Mr-Brown-can-Moo-Can-you-by-Seuss-Sight-Words-Vocab-FUN-2423162 . I think I will only choose 4 – 6 of the possible phrases because we don’t have a long time once we’ve read the story and students borrow. This will be my first meeting with this cohort of Kindergartners… I hope they like it!
Stage 1 will be listening to the madcap Ten Apples Up on Top and making a connection between the text and themselves. I was inspired by a worksheet I saw on Twinkl to create my own, simpler version (to suit my cohort and time availability) that can be used for various books.
Time willing, we will read The 500 Hats of Bartholomew Cubbins with Stage 2. I read this to Stage 2 two years ago and they seemed to engage with it, so I am hoping it will tickle the fancy of this year’s cohort as well. I was struck at the time with the juxtaposition of some beautiful descriptive passages with black and white illustrations (highlighted with touches of red). Therefore my focus tasks this year will be on visualisation and description – with a choice between drawing a hat and describing it OR reading a descriptive passage from the text, drawing a picture to match it, then highlighting the words and phrases from the passage that are evident in the picture.
Finally, I decided to go a bit more mature for Stage 3. We will be looking at a biography of Dr Seuss from the Seussville website and then at some of the politicsl cartoons that he created in the World War II era. You can find a good collection of these at the University of California San Diego Library Digital Collections site. I have created a slide presentation that can be accessed below. Hopefully this will not be too mature for the students and they will find it engaging to see a different side of a familiar author.
Dr Seuss Political Cartoons (PowerPoint presentation)
Well, that is all from me, folks! I’d love to hear if you have any plans for celebrating Dr Seuss in your libraries.