Dr. Seuss once said, “you’re never too old, too wacky, too wild, to pick up a book and read to a child.”
Every year around Dr. Seuss’ birthday, 2.7 million people remember this quote and volunteer to read to elementary and intermediate school students for the Read Across America program.
The program, which was developed in May 1997 by the National Education Association, is the nation’s largest reading event.
This year, Read Across America fell on the 105th birthday of Dr. Seuss. The program was designed as a way to celebrate reading in order to motivate children to become lifelong readers.
This is exactly what happens every year here in the Ramstein community.
This year, Ramstein Elementary School hosted the event from March 2 to 5.
During this week-long celebration, teachers, librarians, parents and counselors created various goals and activities for students to participate in. To make this week more of a celebration, each day was assigned a certain “gimmick” that got students excited to read.
On one of the days, children came to school dressed in comfortable pajamas and spent the day reading or being read to. Before the week began, Juliet Ramos told her second grade class at Ramstein Elementary School that this was “the time when it was important to turn off the television and pick up a book.”
Many students took Ms. Ramos’ advice to heart and created goals for themselves long before the actual event occured.
When asked if she was excited for Read Across America, second-grader Lauren Oltorik said, “Yes! My goal goal is to read 30 whole books by the end of the week.”
This is a week that not only students and teachers get excited about, but figures in the community as well.
Lt. Gen. Phil Breedlove, 3rd Air Force commander; Brig. Gen. Dave Howe, director of logistics, installations and mission support, Headquarters, U.S. Air Forces in Europe director; Brig. Gen. Bill Bender, 86th Airlift Wing commander; Col. Don Bacon, 435th Air Base Wing commander; Col. Gus Green, 435th ABW vice commander; Chief Master Sgt. Mitchell Stippel, 435th ABW command chief; and Klaus Layes, the mayor of Ramstein-Miesenbach took the opportunity to help elementary and
intermediate schoolers get excited about reading. The NEA’s creation of the Read Across America program continually motivates children to read, all the while improving those very important reading skills.
Throughout the week, children were reminded the more you read, the more things you will know. The more you learn, the more places you’ll go!