CCA students and families celebrate Read Across America Day with Susquehanna Service Dogs
In 1997, the National Education Association set out to mark a day for children across the country to focus on literature and reading. In the years since, Read Across America Day has been celebrated every March in honor of the birthday of beloved children's author Dr. Seuss.
This year, students from CCA gathered at the school’s Harrisburg campus to celebrate Read Across America Day by reading to a very special audience: trained service dogs that visited from Susquehanna Service Dogs.
The day started with a visit from CEO Maurice “Reese” Flurie, who read “Green Eggs and Ham” to the students. That was followed by a reading of “Hop on Pop” by Chief Operations Officer Thomas Longenecker. Afterward, it was the students’ turn to read to the dogs: Rico, Molly, Dante and Ellwood. Students were given the option to bring their favorite book from home, or read a book from the CCA library.
The event was designed to promote literacy and public speaking beyond the classroom. With dogs participating as listeners, students could practice their reading skills with a captive, nonjudgmental audience, easing anxiety and allowing the students to focus on building skills in reading and public speaking.
“Cultivating the love of reading in a child has far-reaching effects on their future success in all subject areas,” said Natasha Shane, director of family services at CCA. “Reading boosts vocabulary, helps with focus and, of course, increases knowledge.”
Comet the dog, the school's mascot, also visited during the story session. After Comet and his canine friends left, the students and their families were invited to stay for a screening of a Dr. Seuss classic, “The Lorax.” Following the event, each student got to take home a book provided by CCA.