Scroll to Content

I had the pleasure of working with the wonderful folks at the National Education Association (NEA) on their Read Across America projects from 2015 to 2018 through my company, Park Triangle Productions.

After successfully working on several small creative projects for the organization they trusted us to take on a signature project loved by children and adults alike across the country. It’s a birthday celebration of the late great Theodor Seuss “Ted” Geisel, popularly known as, Dr. Seuss. He had inspired so many of us to read.

Geisel won the Lewis Carroll Shelf Award in 1958 for Horton Hatches the Egg and again in 1961 for And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street. Geisel’s birthday, March 2, has been adopted as the annual date for National Read Across America Day, an initiative on reading created by the National Education Association.

From Wikipedia

Our first project was to use previously recorded footage from Read Across America events to create an explainer/marketing video about what Read Across America was all about. I thought it would be nice to have then president, Lily Eskelsen García to host the explainer video and describe its impact. We recorded green screen elements, some field elements (like the printing facility for the RAA promo material), used sound design and animation to tie everything together. The end result is below.

That same year, the organization had filmed a story that needed to be reimagined in post. We took the prerecorded story elements, filmed some additional material, added graphics/animation and scripted and recorded narration and made the concept work. Below is the finished project.

The following year, we packed up the cameras (and the kitchen sink) and captured the week-long tour that touched down in six cities across the nation. Southwest Airlines provided travel for the team, so we found it fitting to incorporate “flight” as a part of the motif. We used the 3DR Solo drone to capture aerials in each of the locations. We also made use of a portable green screen to add some animation in post.

Here’s a short promo video released while we on the road to get students and educators engaged across the country.

And below is the tour’s wrap video.

On the 20th anniversary of Read Across America, the organization decided the scale back on travel and bring it on home. With that, they prepared a celebration with students from around the DMV converging on NEA headquarters in Washington, DC. There were celebrity hosts like Lavar Burton and Marley Dias to make it a star-studded event of epic proportions. Again, we used animation and a scripted VO to make it come together easily. Below is the final product.

In 2018, the client wanted to do the event at a central location and the Again NEA Headquarters was the perfect place to do it. It’s a celebration of young readers, so the video’s motif reflected just that, with upbeat music, animation and moving shots. Below is the culmination of that effort.

It’s been a great run working on these series of videos and perhaps in the future they’ll do something again for a Read Across America Day

Written by:

Comments are closed.