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Happy Birthday to You!

Last updated Friday, June 3, 2005

Author: Dr. Seuss
Illustrator: Dr. Seuss
Date of Publication: 1959
ISBN: 0394800761
Grade Level: 2nd    (GLCs: Click here for grade level guidelines.)
Date(s) Used: Jun. 2005

Synopsis: The Great Birthday Bird helps a child feel very special on his birthday by showing him the wonderful ways that birthdays are celebrated in Katroo.

Discussion topics for before reading:
•  How do you celebrate your birthday?
•  Looking at the cover, what do you think the book is about?
•  What's the craziest thing you've done for your birthday?
•  Do you know other books by Dr. Seuss?

Discussion topics for during/after reading:
•  Would you like to be visited by the birthday bird? Why or why not?
•  Shout out "I am I," when that part appears.
•  Can you think of different scents that the birthday flower jungle could have? What are your favorite scents?
•  What would be a different crazy cake flavor? What would it taste like?
•  What would you like to eat for your birthday lunch?
•  Have children act out various parts as you read.

Craft ideas:
•  Make a "Happy Birthday to Me" button, decorated with some of the scenes from the book.
•  Make a happy birthday kite to fly (bring ahead option -- sticks or poles for the kite).

Special activities:
•  Rhyming words -- one person says a sentence or a word, and the next has to come up with an ending word that rhymes. Crazy and nonsensical words allowed (as long as they are defined!).
•  Bring ahead option for prize books -- bring birthday wrapping paper and have the children wrap the prize books to be given out later.

*Note: These craft ideas are just suggestions. You can use them, but you don’t have to use them. You can expand upon them, or add your own twist. Remember, though, that the focus of your time should not be on the development and execution of a craft; the focus should be on the read-aloud and the enjoyment of the book!