Hooked on Books

Antonio del Buono kindergartners wear homemade hats like that of

Locals gather at schools to celebrate Dr. Seuss’ birthday in
annual Read Across America
Gilroy – Police officers, school board trustees and other community members donned the signature red and white striped stovepipe hat and read to students in honor of Dr. Seuss’ birthday.

Schools throughout the Gilroy Unified School District celebrated the famous children’s book author by participating in the National Education Association’s Read Across America program. The schools all planned their events separately, said Superintendent Edwin Diaz.

Libby Lai, a retired Antonio del Buono Elementary School teacher, hosted the event at her alma mater. The guest list of readers for what she called “Dr. Seuss’ Birthday Bash,” included Mayor Al Pinheiro, GUSD board members Rhoda Bress, Pat Midtgaard and Jaime Rosso, Gilroy Police Officer Cherie Somavia and others.

Somavia, who serves as Gilroy High School’s resource officer, read Dr. Seuss’ “Sneetches and Other Stories,” to a classroom full of third-graders. After she had finished reading one of the stories, the students asked her questions about her profession.

Before Pinheiro read “The Lorax” to a group of second-graders, he explained that he emigrated to the United States when he was 12 years old and barely spoke a word of English. The Gilroy Mayor told the children that he was never an avid reader and that shortcoming has caused him some trouble in his professional life.

NEA’s Read Across America was established in March of 1998 as a one day event to celebrate Dr. Seuss’ birthday and encourage children to read. Eight years later the event has morphed into a celebration that includes more than two million educators and district officials. Also, more than 40 organizations lend their support to the annual event.

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