It’s hard to imagine that many children have never had a dictionary in their hands. For students of today, it’s an electronic world. They get on their electronic devices and type in www.dictionary.com and are able to find what they need.
On Monday, the Kiwanis Club of the Ballard Community handed out 153 dictionaries to the fourth-grade students at the Ballard East School in Cambridge. For many, according to one fourth grade teacher, Ms. Demry, this was probably the first time that they have ever had a dictionary in their hands in the form of a book.
The Dictionary Project, is not new to the Kiwanis Club of the Ballard Community, this marks the 10th year that fourth grade students have received dictionaries from them.
The Kiwanis motto is “Serving the Children of the World”. Kiwanis partners with “The Dictionary Project” by purchasing the books from the charitable organization which is based in Charleston, S.C. The organization was founded by Mary French in 1995 to provide personal copies of a dictionary for third grade students in the South Carolina public school system. It has now grown into a national organization. To date, over 30 million dictionaries have been donated to children in the United States and internationally. It is funded through individual donations and by sponsors who implement the program in local schools.
“We will use the dictionaries to work on vocabulary, writing assignments and spelling tests,” comment Fourth Grade Teacher Demry. “Not many in the fourth grade have ever used regular dictionaries on their own. This will be a brand new to many of the students. They will use these dictionaries when they have been used to going to www.dictionary.com.”
Presenting the dictionaries to the students were members of the Ballard Kiwanis Club, Mike and Carol Carr and Kevin Holmes.