Dr. Seuss Will Be Special Guest of CBS3/CW Philly Chief Meteorologist Kate Bilo as Global Leadership Academy West Students Mark “National Read Across America Day”
West Philadelphia Alliance for Children (WePAC) celebrates the Doctor’s birthday with readings from his books
PHILADELPHIA, February 27, 2017 – Erstwhile writer, artist and publisher Dr. Seuss will join CBS3/CW Philly Chief Meteorologist Kate Bilo on Thursday, March 2, as she marks “National Read Across America Day” at a Library Café at Global Leadership Academy West school.
March 2, Dr. Seuss’s birthday, serves as the annual date for the “Day,” an initiativ e on reading created by the National Education Association.
The Library Café, hosted by the West Philadelphia Alliance for Children (WePAC), will feature Ms. Bilo reading three books to the students – “The Cat in the Hat” by Dr. Seuss, “The Cat in the Hat Came Back,” also by the “doctor,” and, not really a surprise, “Oh Say Can You Say What’s the Weather Today,” by Tish Rabe (which meteorologist Bilo says is one of her favorites).
Following the reading, Global Leadership Academy West second- and third-grade students will join WePAC library team members and Ms. Bilo for meteorological questions and answers, and a game of “Rhyming Rainstorm” – a favorite in-house game on rainy can’t-go-outside-and-play days.
Library Cafés provide an in-school-time forum for guest speakers and readers to expose children to new ideas and possibilities by tying together real world experiences with literature. Global Leadership Academy West serves 700 students – kindergarten through eighth grade.
WePAC (www.wepac.org) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to bringing the joy of reading back to schools by operating volunteer-run school library programs. The organization currently operates libraries in 14 schools, mostly in West Philadelphia. WePAC is the only organization in Philadelphia working systematically to re-open closed libraries and bring library programming back to schools.
“The clear majority of Philadelphia public schools lack a functioning library,” noted WePAC Executive Director Heather Farber. “School libraries help students get excited about reading and learning in a variety of ways – through exploring the stacks, choosing independent reading books, or listening to stories read to them. Our Library Café series,” she explained, “will let students explore in yet another way… though the experiences and expertise of our special guest readers.”
*Theodor Seuss Geisel (March 2, 1904–September 24, 1991) was an American writer, cartoonist, animator, book publisher, and artist best known for authoring children’s books under the pen name Dr. Seuss. His work includes several of the most popular children’s books of all time, selling over 600 million copies and being translated into more than 20 languages by the time of his death.
Established during the 2003-2004 school year as an outgrowth of a suburban/urban outreach project between Bryn Mawr Presbyterian Church and many civic groups, the West Philadelphia Alliance for Children today is a wholly independent and non-sectarian 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation.
After the School District of Philadelphia began closing school libraries in a drastic attempt to address the widening budget gap, the current face of WePAC was born, stepping in with library and literacy programming. Since 2009, WePAC has re-opened and operated volunteer-run libraries in Philadelphia public schools. In the 2016-2017 academic year, WePAC will run libraries in 14 schools as well as a one-on-one literacy mentoring program, Library Buddies, in several schools.