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Talk/Read/Succeed!

Dr. Seuss Day at Robinson Gardens Apartments

Dr. Seuss Day at Robinson Gardens Apartments

If there’s one thing that makes kids happy, it’s reading Dr. Seuss books.

Oh, and one more thing: Making arts and crafts, and playing games that feature Dr. Seuss characters.

So it was a magical kind of treat on a recent day at Springfield Housing Authority’s Robinson Gardens when there was a party featuring a breakfast of green eggs and ham, Dr. Seuss Bingo, Cat in the Hat trivia, and a variety of crafts projects including make-your-own Thing 1 and Thing 2 bookmarks.

So much fun, and for a bevy of die-hard Dr. Seuss fans on a day when there was no school.

Young Robinson Gardens Apartments residents Alberto Valentin, 5, Clarissa Fields, 5, Clifford Fields, 10, and Hancel Valentin, 9, at the Dr. Seuss Day party.

For Alberto Valentin, who is 5 and a kindergartner, the event on a day off from school was simply a blast.

“I love Dr. Seuss,” declared Alberto, as he scooped up a forkful of green eggs for a late-morning meal.

“I’ve been to the museum, I’ve read the books. I like Cat in the Hat, and Green Eggs and Ham,” he added, referring to his favorite books.

The event at Robinson Gardens came courtesy of Talk/Read/Succeed!, the collaborative, family-based early literacy program underway at three SHA developments. In addition to Robinson, families at Duggan Park and Sullivan apartments are home to a variety of programs aimed at engaging children as well as parents in a lifestyle that promotes health and success.

Nine-year-old Hancel Valentin holds up his ‘Thing 1’ bookmark at the Dr. Seuss Day party.

Program Coordinator Lynne Cimino said the Dr. Seuss Day event was planned with a simple goal in mind: Fun.

“Everyone loves Dr. Seuss,” Cimino noted. “This is a great way to celebrate the author that brings children’s literature to life. This is day to celebrate the author that came from right here in Springfield, and continues to captivate with his silly rhymes and fantastic drawings.”

Indeed, Seuss is one of Springfield’s most notable and favorite local sons. Born here in 1904, Theodor Seuss Geisel worked as a political cartoonist, animator, publisher and artist in addition to writing more than 60 children’s books under the pen name Dr. Seuss.

He is internationally known, and many of his books have been made into films. Among his best-known books include ‘Cat in the Hat’, ‘One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish’, ‘How the Grinch Stole Christmas’ and the title that refers to his childhood address, “And to Think I Saw It on Mulberry Street.’

Bingo! A la Dr. Seuss!

In 2017, the Springfield Museums opened The Amazing World of Dr. Seuss Museum at the Quadrangle, where there is generally a packed crowd of children with adults in tow.

At Robinson Gardens, children easily explained their dedication and devotion to the works of the man who died in 1991.

“Well he’s just a really good writer, and his pictures are great too,” said Clifford Fields, who is 10 and a pupil at Balliet Elementary School.

“I can read the books, or I can look up a video on YouTube and watch it,” he said. “I love the rhymes, and I love the pictures. All the books are good, but my favorite is The Lorax.”

Hancel Valentin said the books and movies are great, but he also loves going to the museum downtown, where there is always good fun going on.

“It’s so good there. There’s always fun stuff to do, and the pictures are great, all over the walls,” said the nine-year-old.

Five-year-old Clarissa Fields is a die-hard Dr. Seuss lover.

Ivette Fernandez is mother to the Valentin brothers, and said she reads Dr. Seuss books to her sons as frequently as possible. They have visited the museum several times.

“It’s all fun,” she said. “And you know they’re learning to love reading at the same time.”

2 days ago / Talk/Read/Succeed!
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