HES celebrates Read Across America Day
Published 6:38 pm Wednesday, March 2, 2016
By GRAHAM BROOKS / Staff Writer
HELENA–Dozens of Helena Elementary School kindergarteners filled the cafeteria with Dr. Seuss custom made T-shirts, The Cat in the Hat hats and more as they anxiously awaited the start of a Dr. Seuss birthday party on Wednesday, March 2.
Helena Elementary School, as well as thousands of schools nationwide participated in Read Across America Day on March 2, which also happens to be the late Theodor Seuss Geisel’s birthday, commonly known as Dr. Seuss.
Read Across America Day was founded by the National Education Association and is celebrated to acknowledge the importance of reading and achievements of Dr. Seuss.
HES celebrated the all-day event by inviting guest readers to the school that included parents, Helena Mayor Mark Hall, members from the Shelby County Schools central office, Kiwanis club members and more.
Hall was invited to read “Cat In The Hat” to Brandy Henderson’s 2nd grade class as many classrooms saw numerous visitors.
In the afternoon, the kindergarteners saw a performance of “Green Eggs and Ham” by Helena High School students, ate cupcakes and laughed as teachers performed the “Tooty-Ta” song.
Kindergarten teacher Andrea Burk has taught at Helena Elementary School for 26 years and has helped coordinate Read Across America Day for a number of years.
“All of the kindergarteners paint T-shirts and we celebrate by reading Dr. Seuss books and doing all sorts of math and science activities,” said Burk. “Always on his birthday we have a celebration in the cafeteria. I think my favorite thing about it is when the teachers do the ‘Tooty-Ta’ because it’s like being at the kindergarten comedy club. The kids think it is hilarious.”
The students from Helena High School came to the elementary school for the first time to help celebrate and Burk was also appreciative of their efforts.
“That was the first time they’ve ever done that for us so we were pleased to have them perform,” said Burk. “I think that’s a really good way for our kids to see the older kids and to me it’s good for both ends.”