St. Francis third-graders receive dictionaries

For the fifth year in a row, all third-grade students in the St. Francis School District received a free dictionary. The local project is based on a national project designed to assist all students to become good writers, active readers and creative thinkers. It is funded locally by Connexus Energy in partnership with Anoka and Ramsey Rotary clubs.

This year 385 dictionaries were distributed to all third-graders in Cedar Creek, East Bethel and St. Francis Elementary schools. The students and teachers are excited to receive the dictionaries and plan on using them throughout the school year. Ms. Perkins, third-grade teacher at Cedar Creek, told Anoka Rotarians Luanne Kane Hogan, Stacey Buchanan and Paula Coffey, “I am so glad you are here, we look forward to receiving these dictionaries each year.”

Perkins also went on to explain to the class that these dictionaries will be kept at school as a learning tool and resource for the remainder of the year.

While handing out the dictionaries the students are told why they are getting this gift and how the dictionaries are funded.

Each student was able to open their dictionary and explore all that was inside including maps, sign language, presidential history, facts about each state and the longest word in the English language; a scientific word that has 189,819 letters, which Hogan thinks she will be able to pronounce next year (and even said she would say it for all fourth-grade classes, too).

The idea for The Dictionary Project began in Georgia in 1992, when a woman provided dictionaries to 50 students at a school close to her home. Interest in the program grew by word of mouth and in 1995 it became an official nonprofit organization. Since that time, more than 18 million children in the U.S. have received dictionaries, according to information from The Dictionary Project.

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