Celebrating Dr. Seuss’s Birthday

Nearly 25 years after his death, Dr. Seuss remains firmly rooted in American consciousness as the beloved author of so many of our favorite children’s books. From Hop on Pop to Horton Hears a Who!, the late author’s simple yet powerful messages rhymed their way into our homes and straight into our hearts. To ring in Dr. Seuss’s birthday March 2, here are four reasons why the books you read when you were younger are worth passing on to the next generation and particularly to your foster children.

Dr. Seuss’s Birthday: Literacy’s Starting Line:

There’s no better reason to share Dr. Seuss’s stories with your foster children than to help them learn to read and write. Literacy is an invaluable, lifelong skill that will help your child succeed as he grows and long into adulthood. Dr. Seuss’s books are a great place to start – their wording is simple, straightforward and most of all, fun.

Dr. Seuss’s Birthday: Good Times for All:

Speaking of fun, Dr. Seuss’s stories teach us a lesson that many of us tend to relegate to the background when we become adults: that playfulness is a big part of a healthy lifestyle. Foster children need to know that play is a good thing as long as it happens in the right places and at the right time. It helps us build friendships, exercise our bodies and practice social skills like sharing.

Dr. Seuss’s Birthday: A Story to Share:

Dr. Seuss’s books also teach us the importance of stories themselves. His stories emphasize respect, sharing, determination and love, and do a remarkable job of instilling those important values in our foster children. What other stories – this includes books, movies, TV shows, music and all other types of media – are your foster children being immersed in that will shape their worldview as they grow?

Dr. Seuss’s Birthday: A Promising Future:

Growing is a central theme in many of Dr. Seuss’s stories, particularly in Oh, the Places You’ll Go, where a young boy embarks upon the journey of life. Seuss’s words bounce in playful rhymes that support the boy all the way: “Will you succeed? Yes, you will indeed. (98 3/4% guaranteed),” but they never suggest that the quest is possible without hard work: “Simple it’s not, I’m afraid you will find, for a mind maker-upper to make up his mind.” What better way to provide loving guidance to your foster child than to support his wishes and dreams while warning gently of the many trials ahead?

On Dr. Seuss’s Birthday you can clearly see that he cared dearly about children because he knew that they hold the key to a brighter future. His books were a way for the late, great author to encourage and embolden children to become smart, confident, responsible people as they grew older. On what would be his 115th birthday March 2, take some time to share his whimsical works with your foster child.

Author: Lloyd Nelson, FAFS Digital Media Manager

Lloyd Nelson is the Digital Media Manager of Foster and Adoptive Family Services. He can be reached at lnelson@fafsonline.org.

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