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Dr. Seuss greets Immokalee preschoolers

Immokalee Preschool Graduation18IMMOKALEE — Dr. Seuss turned up in nearly every aspect of the Immokalee Seminole Preschool graduation. Cat in the Hat, Thing 1, Thing 2 and other things adorned the walls May 6 at the Immokalee Community Center. Graduates used Seuss’ work to rhyme their way through skits. He even made it into speeches.

“You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose,” Preschool Center Director Thommy Doud told the graduates in a passage from “Oh, the Places You’ll Go!”

Kindergarten is the next place the 10 graduates will go but not before their first academic steps culminated with a ceremony in front of school officials and families.

Immokalee Seminole Preschool Center Manager Michelle Ford urged the youngsters to “take on challenges, be loving, be kindhearted, love learning, be a part of the tribal community, laugh, have fun, be all that you can be and never believe that you cannot achieve anything.”

Students entertained the audience with brief performances related to Seuss’ books. Fred Mullins, of the Family Services Department, played guitar and sang a Seminole song with the class.

The graduates have plenty of years to decide their career paths, but they provided early glimpses. Doctors, scientists, construction workers, cowboys and cowgirls topped their lists. No matter when they begin to carve their niche in the workforce, the preschool Class of 2015 will always be remembered by their teacher, Kimberly Denetdale, who said this class carried extra meaning because it was the first she taught by herself.

“I’m very proud of the accomplishments each graduate has made, and now it is time to say goodbye,” Denetdale told the audience. “They are ready for bigger things now. It’s bittersweet to see them go.”

The 2015 graduates are Evelyn Frank, Ashton Garza, Carly Garza, Haloma Jimmie, Siya Osceola, Aaron Rodriguez, Arhianna Rodriguez, Isis Rodriguez, Jezabel Yzaguirre and Riley Yzaguirre.

Kevin Johnson
Kevin Johnson is senior editor. He has worked for The Seminole Tribune since 2014. He was previously an editor, photographer and reporter for newspapers in Southwest Florida and Connecticut. Contact Kevin at