Many senior citizens have participated in a Reminiscence Writing Class from Ruby Walton at the Janesville, Wisconsin, Senior Center. All of the classes use Ruby’s wonderful book, Memoirs Made Easy. She wrote the book of fifty-five topics whille teaching in a retirement community in Tuscon, Arizona, from 1900-1997. Ruby has donated all of the $10 charge to the Janesville Senior Center.
Hopscotch, Hobos, & Foxholes is a book of the fascinating tales of 41 Janesville Senior Center class members. The title refers to the recollections from childhood, the Great Depression, and World War II from writers who were making history in the first half of the twentieth century.
Authors of this book receive no compensation, and the profits earned are donated to the Senior Center in Janesville. Proceeds are used to purchase dictionaries for all of the third grade students in the twelve public schools of Janesville. Various writing class members volunteer to distribute The Best Dictionary for Students. Carol Hurley is the Senior Center volunteer who coordinates the distribution. Over 900 were purchased for the 2010 third grades. The third grade students and teachers love to receive them and have a fun discussion about them. I have gone to Adams School for six years and have notes from many appreciative students.
Janesville has four Catholic Schools and two Lutheran Schools. The Knights of Columbus in some years has donated dictionaries to the Catholic Schools. Pam McGill has coordinated a project this year from the Elks Lodge to donate dictionaries to the third grade students and teachers of the Catholic and Lutheran Schools. The Elks Lodge raises money for various charities with fundraisers, such as the Fall Raffle and the Style Show.
Each Janesville third grade student has an equal chance for learning with his/her own dictionary.
Helen Jean Close