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Rotary Club delivers dictionaries to third-graders
• Service club has been giving dictionaries for 18 years
Dictionary giveaway 2024
Third-graders were very happy to receive free dictionaries supplied by members of the Ceres Rotary Club in the last month. - photo by Contributed to the Courier

The Ceres Rotary Club’s tradition of giving a student dictionary to all third-graders in Ceres was recently completed as a way to encourage them to read and complement their schoolwork.

The club has been distributed dictionaries for 18 years. This year approximately 1,100 dictionaries were distributed at a cost of about $35 each but member Liz Hosmer said the books are “worth it.”

The club purchased and distributed both the MacMillan Dictionary for Children and Merriam-Webster’s Spanish-English Student Dictionary. According to Ceres Unified School District’s 2023 “Report to the Community,” 80.2 percent of students are of the Hispanic/Latino ethnicity.

For some students, the dictionary – chocked full of color photos – is the first book they’ve ever owned. Most were excited to receive their free book.

“Just to see them excited about books and being able to get interested in reading is just a wonderful thing to see,” said Hosmer.

The presentation included a member reading a short story to the students in an assembly setting before distribution.

The club visited all Ceres schools where third-graders attend.

The Ceres Rotary Club was chartered in 1977 with Charter President Gus Pallios taking the gavel.