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Ripon Rotary distributes free dictionaries

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A classroom full of third graders hold up their weighty new dictionaries after receiving them from the Ripon Rotary Club members who presented the books to all the third grades in Ripon and Ripon C...

GLENN KAHL/The Bulletin

POSTED February 28, 2013 1:43 a.m.

Literacy in the world is a main concern of the international Rotary Club.

It was in the forefront Wednesday when Ripon Rotarians gathered in teams to personally hand out new dictionaries to the third graders in the community.

Members of the Ripon service club signed up to take part in the classroom presentations on Wednesday beginning at Colony Oak Elementary and on to Weston, Ripon Elementary, Parkview and Ripona – finishing at Ripon Christian Elementary School.  More than 300 McMillan Dictionaries were presented to local children.

Four Rotarians including RIpon Unified superintendent Louise Johnson arrived at Colony Oak at 10 a.m. and greeted children first in Pam Cole’s classroom before moving on to the other third grade under teacher Patty Gephardt.

Harrison Gibbs and Linda Streeter called the names of children printed on the fly pages of the dictionaries and the students walked to the front of the room one-by-one to get their colorful new reference books seeing their names in print.

In both classrooms the school superintendent explained the tenets of Rotary and the importance of having a good dictionary that they will be able to someday hand down to their children and possibly their grandchildren.

Truly in her best teacher mode, she asked the children to look up several words in their new dictionaries with students explaining the meanings and using those words in a complete sentence.

Fellow Rotarian Harrison Gibbs followed suit in the next room they visited with him and the children using their fingers to take an educational walk through the pages of the new books.

Other Rotarians in Manteca, Salida, Modesto and throughout the country are taking similar approaches toward improving literacy in the country and throughout the world.

Ripon Rotary meets every Wednesday noon at the Barnwood Restaurant and is open to new members in business and in the professions who will use the Rotary motto in their professional lives day in and day out.

Rotary members follow a long established creed:  “Is it the truth, Is it fair to all concerned, Will it build good will and better friendships and Will it be beneficial to all concerned?”

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