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Dr. Seuss Storytime Ideas

Updated on February 22, 2012

Celebrate Read Across America... aka Dr. Seuss's birthday (March 2nd)... with a storytime featuring your favorite tales by the author of The Cat in the Hat. Check below for books, songs and rhymes by and inspired by the beloved children's author.

Photo Credit

Green Eggs and Ham

Sam loves green eggs and ham, but no matter what he does or persuasive he tries to be, his friend refuses to try them. Not with a fox or in a box. Not in a house or with a mouse. Not here. Not there. Not anywhere.

Green Eggs and Ham
Green Eggs and Ham

Most of Dr. Seuss's books are highly visual and Green Eggs and Ham is no different. So children will get more from the story, point out props each time Mr. Picky Eater refuses to eat the dish someplace now. Invite children to help you recite the refrain of places he refuses to eat them. Not only will this help children build memory and storytelling skills, but they will build phonological awareness as they play with Seuss's rhyming silly text.

 

And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street

Marco imagines what he'll tell his dad he saw while walking home along Mulberry Street. He imagines everything from the mundane of a zebra pulling a wagon down the street to the more outlandish elephant-riding raja and in the company of a big brass band.

And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street
And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street

Children in my storytimes probably think I'm quite similar to Marco. We regularly talk about building snowmen during the summer, swimming with polar bears in the local lake and seeing elephants sedately walking down the road while on the way to the library. A dinosaur and a cougar also recently visited us during a bookmobile storytime. Several times I've changed the title of the book to And to Think That I Saw it On Broadway and changed the animals to puppets the library owns. Near the end of my story, there's usually an ant pulling a wagon... which holds several dragons, a few dogs, a cat... and the requisite elephant. By using the puppets as props, children are able to grasp the more outrageous concepts of the story.

 

Fun Mulberry Street Trivia

  • And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street was Dr. Seuss's first published book for children. Though the number of publishers changed with each retelling of the story, Seuss claimed 20-50 publishers rejected the manuscript before an ex-college classmate from Dartmouth took on the project. Seuss thanked him by naming the young boy in the story Marco after his son and dedicating the book to his wife.

  • Mulberry Street is a real street in Springfield, Massachusetts where Seuss grew up.

Cat in the Hat Fingerplay

Author Unknown

One little cat on a sunny day

Put on his hat and went out to play.

Two little cats when it started getting dark

Put on their hats and went to the park.

Three little cats when the sky was blue

Put on their hats and went to the zoo.

Four little cats by the kitchen door

Put on their hats and went to the store.

Five little cats on a sunny day

Put on their hats and they all ran away..

Dr. Seuss Stickers

Do you typically hand out stickers after storytime? These Dr. Seuss stickers are sure to please

The Foot Book

The Foot Book (The Bright and Early Books for Beginning Beginners)
The Foot Book (The Bright and Early Books for Beginning Beginners)

If you can read to a Seussian beat, try The Foot Book. This fun book introduces opposites by telling the story of feet. Use a puppet to help with the lefts, rights, up the air and down on the ground feet. If using this story with infants or walkers, encourage parents to help their child move their feet back, forth, up and down at those points in the story as well as gently tap their left and right feet during the refrain.

 

Ten Apples Up on Top!

Ten Apples Up on Top! (Bright & Early Board Books(TM))
Ten Apples Up on Top! (Bright & Early Board Books(TM))

Lion, Dog and Tiger each brag they can balance more apples on top of their heads while walking a high wire, roller skating and pulling other crazy stunts. Unfortunately a hord of angry bears and a flock of birds have other ideas.

 

Have You Ever Seen a Fishy

Traditional Song

Seuss liked to make up stories and present the impossible as if it actually happened. Sing this song after reading any of his tall tales such as And to Think That I Saw It On Mulberry Street or McElligot's Pool.

Have you ever seen a fishy on a hot summer day?

palms up in questioning gesture

Have you ever seen a fishy, a swimmin' in the bay?

With its hands in its pockets, and its pockets in its pants,

hands on top of front pants pockets

Have you ever seen a fishy do the Hoochy Coochy Dance?

dramatically move hands to on top of back pockets

You never did!

clap, clap

You never will!

clap, clap

Sing repeating above actions but pretend to have arms frozen to your side.

Have you ever seen a fishy on a cold winter day?

Have you ever seen a fishy, a swimmin' in the bay?

With its hands in its pockets, and its pockets in its pants,

Have you ever seen a fishy do the Hoochy Coochy Dance?

You never did!

You never will!

Dr. Seuss Bookmarks

Older kids enjoy fun bookmarks. Check out these

Dr Seuss Bookmark Assortment Set, 50 Pieces (66869)
Dr Seuss Bookmark Assortment Set, 50 Pieces (66869)

Clear-coat finish for added durability.

7 3/8" Long and 2" wide.

 

Are You Ready to Play Outside?

Are You Ready to Play Outside? (An Elephant and Piggie Book)
Are You Ready to Play Outside? (An Elephant and Piggie Book)

While not written by Dr. Seuss, Are You Ready to Play Outside by Mo Willems won the 2009 Theodor Seuss Geisel Award. In this hilarious book for early readers, Gerald becomes distraught as his plans to play outside with best friend Piggie are ruined by rain.

 

More Libraries Share the Love of Dr. Seuss

MMK Public Library shares Yertle the Turtle

The Cat in the Hat helped share a special flannelboard story at Palatine Public Library.

Sterling Public Library shares a flannelboard version of Oh I Wish that I Had Duck Feet.

What is your favorite Seussian tale to share in storytime?

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    • Virginia Allain profile image

      Virginia Allain 4 years ago from Central Florida

      This was just what I needed to add into my Dr Seuss Birthday Party lens. Thanks!

    • Frischy profile image

      Frischy 5 years ago from Kentucky, USA

      I love reading Dr. Seuss during storytime! It is hard to select a favorite, but Hop on Pop will always have a warm spot in my heart. It was the first book my little sister learned to read. I helped her with the hard words until she could do it independently. I was six and she was three, my first pupil.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      This is adorable! I love the puppets!