WEST ORANGE, NJ — When West Orange Public Schools celebrated Read Across America week, Sen. Bob Menendez, Assemblyman John McKeon, Mayor Robert Parisi and Councilwoman Susan McCartney were among the guest visitors who read to students throughout the district. Superintendent Dr. Scott Cascone also donned his construction hat to read a bilingual book.

Assemblies, crazy hat and sock days, pajama parties, videos, songs, guest readers and books—lots of books—were the norm in all seven West Orange elementary schools and the Betty Maddalena Early Learning Center during the week of Dr. Seuss’ birthday.

Dr. Seuss, whose storied career writing children’s books began in 1937 with “And to Think That I Saw it on Mulberry Street,” to his last in 1990, “Oh, The Places You’ll Go,” has reached generations of children, promoted literacy, and sold more than 600 million books. Fittingly, his books played a large role in the elementary school’s events.

The week began with a series of fun activities to generate enthusiasm for reading in grades K-5. Begun in 1997 by the National Education Association, Read Across America was created to “motivate children to read, an important factor in student achievement and creating lifelong successful readers.”