Exactly one week ago, the kids in our classroom made hats and puppets, and ate cupcakes, in celebration. We read stories. We even watched a movie. All of it was in honor of a great person. As I helped kids with their work and read stories and stapled hats, I thought fondly on how much of an impact this man has had on my life. This man was Theodor Geisel.
Most of you know him as Dr. Seuss.
The first book I ever read on my own, The Foot Book, was by Dr. Seuss. His stories evoked a deep love of poetry, meter, rhythm, and rhyme in me. Since a very young age I have loved writing, and while I'm no Dr. Seuss, I like to think I'm not bad at writing poetry. His stories are fun, whimsical, and great for reading aloud.
I remember hearing, "'No, Pat, no! Don't sit on that!' ...'cause it's a captus!"
But there's more to it than just that. Dr. Seuss was very good at addressing difficult issues in simplistic ways that children could understand. Take a good look at The Sneetches and Other Stories. The Sneetches with "stars upon thars" considered better than those without? Hello, discrimination. I can't help but feel that the US Congress is like "The Zax" right now. "Too many Daves" (a favorite for my nephew, purely because of 'Oliver Boliver Butt') can be applied to regret, and thinking before acting. And in my personal favorite, "What Was I Scared Of?" the narrator discovers that the things he's afraid of may not be that scary (or that they're just as scared as him).
I mean, how can you read this and not love it?
"Then I was deep within the woodsWhen, suddenly, I spied them.I saw a pair of pale green pantsWith nobody inside them!"