Read Across America Day, also known as Dr. Seuss Day, took place on Wednesday, March 2. In my sixth and seventh grade Classroom Guidance classes, we celebrated throughout the week by reading the classic Dr. Seuss story “Oh, the Places You’ll Go!”.
I told the students that they are never too old for Dr. Seuss, and in fact the copy of the book that I read to them was a gift from my cousin when I graduated high school. In the story, which was Dr. Seuss’s final published work before his death in 1991, the main character experiences the highs and lows that come along with life. He contemplates going down scary, dark paths that represent the decisions we must face. He experiences “bang-ups,” “hang-ups,” and “slumps,” all of which represent the challenges and difficulties that we all inevitably go through.
The main character is able to overcome these struggles and achieve great things, just as all students have the potential to do. In class, we discussed and illustrated the struggles we face, talked about the concept of the “balancing act” in life, discussed students’ potential to achieve great things and pinpointed goals for the future. We talked about which “bang-ups” and “hang-ups” we have control over (such as not studying enough for a test or causing an argument with a friend) and those that we do not have control over (such as the divorcing of parents or moving from one state to another).
Students learned that they are constantly making choices, whether they realize it or not. As they grow up, they will gain more and more independence and the responsibility to make more and more decisions. They have wonderful futures ahead of them filled with exciting options and choices and students were eager to discuss the “places they’ll go”!