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Alcova Elementary, Gwinnett schools celebrate Dr. Seuss, reading

State School Superintendent John Barge was among a host of visitors on Monday to Alcova Elementary in Dacula for “Read Across America” a week-long program to promote reading and literacy. (Special Photo)

State School Superintendent John Barge was among a host of visitors on Monday to Alcova Elementary in Dacula for “Read Across America” a week-long program to promote reading and literacy. (Special Photo)

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Local comedian Arlen “Griff” Griffin, left, poses for a picture with Alcova Elementary Assistant Principal Kia Henley and Principal Todd Langley on Monday. Griffin visited the Dacula school for a “Read Across America” event to promote reading and literacy. (Staff Photo: Keith Farner)

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Students and teachers at Alcova Elementary in Dacula decorated their school on Monday for “Read Across America” a week-long program to promote reading and literacy. (Staff Photo: Keith Farner)

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Michael Boddie, a gym instructor at L.A. Fitness, reads to first grade students at Alcova Elementary on Monday as part of a “Read Across America” event to promote reading and literacy, and celebrate Dr. Seuss’ birthday. (Staff Photo: Keith Farner)

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The doors to the media center at Alcova Elementary in Dacula are decorated on Monday to celebrate Dr. Seuss’ birthday and a “Read Across America” event to promote reading and literacy. (Staff Photo: Keith Farner)

DACULA — They had green eggs and ham for breakfast in the school cafeteria, listened to tongue-twisting stories like “Fox in Socks” and walked through hallways and classroom doors decorated for Dr. Seuss’ birthday.

Many students and teachers wore “Thing 1” and “Thing 2” outfits, blue hair wigs, painted their faces and wore Dr. Seuss’ patented striped top hats.

Second-grader Nicholas Kelly giggled at the line in “Are You My Mother” that read, “You’re a snort, you’re not my mother.”

Kelly’s classmate, Lyric Stewart, said the event was a reminder of a time when she read Dr. Seuss’ books.

“So it makes me want to read them again,” she said.

Students at Alcova listened to stories from several guest readers on Monday that ended a week-long celebration of Dr. Seuss and literacy. Gwinnett County Board of Commission Chairwoman Charlotte Nash, Dacula Mayor Jimmy Wilbanks and State School Superintendent John Barge, who read on Monday, were among them. Guest readers also included four Gwinnett County police officers, a comedian and other community members, business partners and parents in their efforts to encourage reading.

It’s the 17th annual celebration of Dr. Seuss’ birthday, which was on Sunday, by the National Education Association to promote literacy awareness and that reading is fundamental.

“Dr. Seuss is such a cool author, and his books go into so many different themes,” said Alcova Assistant Principal Kia Henley, who wore red-striped socks and organized the celebration complete with a birthday cake. “They’re books for all ages and all themes, and (show) the importance of reading for all students.”

First-grader Renee Cargill said she enjoyed listening to “Fox in Socks.”

“It was very funny when he pushed the fox in the bottle,” she said. “The fox stayed in there, and then he left him in there. His tongue was very tired after all those games.”

Similar events were celebrated across Gwinnett in the last week.

At South Gwinnett High on Friday, 367 students from Britt Elementary listened to members of the Reader’s Rally Team and Media Center Aides read to them in small groups during the day.

“Our teachers look forward to this event the entire year, and our students love to come on a walking field trip to South,” said Shannon Davis, media specialist at Britt Elementary.

More than 150 children at the Primrose School of Five Forks also celebrated the event. The students also finished their month-long book drive to make a $1,500 donation to the local Reach Out and Read chapter, a nonprofit committed to promoting literacy through pediatric primary care.

The Primrose School of Five Forks has scheduled several readers for Thursday, including Shiloh Middle School Principal Eli Welch, Reach Out and Read coordinator Rhonda Hudson Gwin Oaks Elementary School Principal Tonya Burnley and Lawrenceville Mayor Judy Jordan-Johnson.