Why is the internet riddled with photos of Cat-in-the-Hat hats, Thing 1 & Thing 2 costumes and Dr. Seuss quotes lately? Simple: March is National Reading Month and that annual Read Across America campaign. Bonus? It's a great way for military members to connect with their kids.
The month-long reading motivation and awareness program is driven by the National Education Association (NEA) and celebrates building a nation of readers and helps to encourage every child, in every community, to celebrate reading.
For United Through Reading, the campaign presents an opportunity to encourage the nation’s military to get involved by grabbing a Cat-in-the-Hat hat and recording a special Dr. Seuss story for the kids in their lives. United Through Reading is a nonprofit organization that offers service members all over the world the opportunity to be video-recorded reading books to their children at home. The program helps military families deal with the separation that is a frequent part of military life it creates emotional connections between parents and their children, encourages literacy, and makes homecomings easier on both parents and children.
During Read Across America , at nearly 200 United Through Reading locations around the world, service members are ready to don their Cat in the Hat hats, crack open their Dr. Seuss books, and read a Dr. Seuss classic for the little ones they love. United Through Reading sends each command the Dr. Seuss books and props needed for a successful campaign, and uses the Seuss-filled campaign to remind not only their service members, but their volunteers, supporters and partners that, You're never too old, too wacky, too wild, to pick up a book and read with a child.
For this year’s campaign, United Through Reading has already had a large response from commands near and far who are participating in the reading fun. Among them was US Coast Guard Commandant Admiral Paul Zukunft, US Coast Guard Ombudsman at Large Fran DeNinno-Zukunft and Chaplain of the Coast Guard, Captain Gregory Todd, who each took a turn in front of the United Through Reading camera at a Read Across America kickoff event hosted by the US Coast Guard. (In fact, the USCG loved their tongue twisting rhymes so much they even wrote their own blog post about the campaign -- check it out.) Also joining in the fun was Chief Master Sergeant Mitch Brush, Senior Enlisted Adviser to the Chief of the National Guard.
Can’t wait to grab your own favorite rhyme and join the fun? Easy! Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and the UTR team will get help get your family everything needed to be reading across america in no time.
Learn more about United Through Reading at unitedthroughreading.org.
Taylor Moncaco is the director communications for United Through Reading. There she strategically leads United Through Reading’s internal and external communication efforts. Taylor helps to successfully tell the story of United Through Reading and grow awareness and participation with the military families United Through Reading serves. Taylor earned a BA in Mass Communications from Miami University of Ohio and has spent 8 years in the communications field working in public relations, marketing and community engagement.