“You Make ‘Em. I’ll Amuse ‘Em.” ~Dr. Seuss

March 2nd has always been a special day to me. It’s my birthday! It’s also the birthday of world-renown children’s author, Dr. Seuss. I bet you didn’t know that about Dr. Seuss! Here are some more things you might not have known about this legendary writer. His full name is Theodor Seuss Geisel and he is not a doctor! Until the publication of The Cat in the Hat, he worked in advertising and developed advertisements for NBC, Ford and General Electric. It seems almost ironic that Seuss himself did not have children and, in fact, it was in the same year that he wrote his first children’s book that his wife, Helen, learned she couldn’t bear children. When people asked him how he could write so well for children, despite not having his own, Seuss was known to commonly respond: “You make ‘em. I’ll amuse ‘em.”

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Little L and I had a bit of a birthday celebration for Dr. Seuss prior to March 2nd, since we usually reserve that day to celebrate me! Our activities were the best kind – they were fun, educational, sensory and had a snack to go along with them!

As we read Ten Apples Up On Top, I was racking my brain to think of what I had in the craft cupboard to compliment the story. Out of pure coincidence, I had a red bingo dabber in there (don’t we all!?) so we printed out pictures of the TIGER, LION and DOG and had a quick colouring session (Little L decided his tiger should be blue, which is very sensible when you are 2!). I mounted them on some cardstock and cut them out before reading the book again.

On our second time through the book we stopped along the way to count the apples on the heads of the characters and add apples to our own pictures, using the Bingo dabber! Little L loved using the bingo dabber because it was just that little bit different than the standard craft supplies (markers, crayons, glue) that I usually give him.

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I was really happy with this activity because it promoted the use of math language. Little L was saying words “more” and “another” and comparing quantities (“The Tiger has more apples than the lion, Mom!”) It was an easy, quick activity that wasn’t too messy. Lot’s of positives there!

It isn’t hard to find Thing 1 and Thing 2 handprint crafts online. Most involve painting your child’s hand red and then blue but that was too messy for me to get into on a weekday evening! Instead, I opted for tracing his hand onto red construction paper and then dipping into the paint for the blue handprint. I found a great printable at www.obseussed.com. We put some faces on them and had our very own Things!

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Now, I promised snacks – didn’t I? We did two simple Dr. Seuss snacks. For one we stacked red and white-mint lifesavers in a pattern to resemble the Cat in the Hat’s hat. (Little L ate the red gummy ones but left the mints!) It was fun for him to figure out the red-white-red-white pattern. Our second snack involved melting white chocolate chips with a bit of butter in the microwave. We put little haphazard spoonfuls on waxed paper and dropped a green Smartie in the middle. We put them in the fridge to harden and in about an hour they came out looking like an egg with a green yolk!

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Dr. Seuss books are iconic and have encouraged kids for generations to be silly! I hope you and your kids find a way to mark his birthday. You can check out this link and this one too for some more engaging ways to celebrate! #MelMar

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