News Feature

Universal Children’s Day Celebrated

Daylong event included readings, dance, music, speakers and more


A celebrated children’s author stood in front of roughly 200 third-graders visiting Bridgewater State University on Friday and held up a book filled with nothing but blank white pages.


This, Peter Reynolds explained, was his favorite book. 


“This book could be anything; this book could be your life,” said Mr. Reynolds, who was joined by his brother and co-author, Paul. “Fill up your blank book with your dreams.”


The authors and students from Brockton’s Huntington School kicked off BSU’s all-day celebration of Universal Children’s Day, which included educational activities, an a capella performance by Wellesley High School singers and afternoon panels on pressing global issues and social justice led by BSU deans and faculty. 


Documentaries, dance performances and a photo shoot involving a drone were also part of the youth-focused festivities.


In the keynote address, Dr. Bob Sylvester – the professor of global literacies in the Elementary and Early Childhood Department – said proof that we live in a globalized world can be found in the fact that in Boston as many high school valedictorians were born in the United States than elsewhere.


“It validates the idea that the capacity for human genius can be found anywhere in the world,” said Dr. Sylvester, noting that 38 countries have been represented by Boston high school valedictorians in the past decade. “The world is already here.”

The children were treated to a series of activities and workshops conducted by the Department of Theater, the Department of Dance, the Bridgewater State University Police Department, the Department of Movement Arts, Health Promotion and Leisure Studies and FableVision, as well as a performance by the dance troupe Urban Renegades and the Wellesley High School a cappella group.

Global goals for sustainable development outlined by the UN include: no poverty, zero hunger, good health and well being, quality education, gender equality, clean water and sanitation, affordable and clean energy, decent work and economic growth, industry and infrastructure, reduced inequalities, sustainable cities and communities, responsible consumption and production, climate action, life below water, life on land, peace and justice strong institutions, and partnerships.  (Story and photo by Charlie Peters, University News & Media)