Mansfield’s local chapter of the National Grange has provided its yearly donation of dictionaries to Southeast Elementary School’s third graders.
The Grange is proud to support The Dictionary Project through its Word for Thirds program. Through the tireless efforts of the Grange’s network of more than 300,000 volunteers, America’s oldest rural and agriculture organization has presented third-grade students across the nation with more than 600,000 dictionaries.
A dictionary is one of the most powerful reference tools young children will be introduced to during their schooling years. Its usefulness goes beyond just providing correct spellings, pronunciations, and definitions. It is also a companion for solving problems that arise as children develop their reading, writing, and creative thinking abilities.
“With every student receiving the same dictionary, it makes it easy to teach dictionary skills,” James Hendricks, Southeast Elementary School third-grade teacher, said. “Third-grade students learn how to use the dictionary through our language arts program and then can use it independently throughout the year. Our third graders were so excited to receive the dictionaries.”
One student said, “I love the smell of the new dictionary. It is great!”
Another student said, “I can search for new words to learn every day; this is awesome!”
“It is amazing to see the smiles on children’s faces when we present them with dictionaries,” Jim Palmer, Echo Grange #180 President, said. “It gives them a sense of pride when they have a dictionary to look up words on their own. It promotes learning and helps mold their self-confidence and independence.”
The Grange, headquartered in Washington, D.C., partnered with The Dictionary Project, a 501(c) (3) nonprofit organization, in 2002. The goal of the program is to assist third-grade students to complete the school year as good writers, active readers and creative thinkers by providing them with their own personal dictionaries. The dictionaries are a gift to each student to use at school and at home for years to come. The organization has presented more than 17 million children with dictionaries.