National Dictionary Month means free dictionaries for students

Back row, from left: Chester Elementary School teacher Brooke Geer, with Elks’ members Dave Aitken and Bud Wasson in the back, along with third grade students, posing outside of Chester Elementary School for National Dictionary Month. Photo submitted

October is the time for fall color, crisp mountain air and for Elks Lodges throughout the country to commemorate National Dictionary Month.

Last year alone, over two million dictionaries were distributed to third-grade students covering every state in the nation.

This year on Columbus Day, Oct. 9, Lake Almanor lodge members Bud Wasson and Dave Aitken greeted 31 students of Mrs. Geer’s combined third-grade class.

The dictionaries included useful reference data such as maps, countries, states, the U.S. Constitution and American presidents, designed to assist the class in becoming better students, now and in the future.

As in the past, with assistance from student volunteers, several questions were asked of the class. “What do you think the first word in the dictionary might be?” Of course the first letter is an “A,” but did you know that the second letter is also an “A”?

The class did and they came up with “Aardvark,” with nothing further known about the creature than it’s an animal that eats ants.

The word “scholarship” was then discussed and the students happily found a complimentary dollar bill as a bookmark when they looked up the word. The students learned that scholarships are offered by many organizations, providing financial assistance for further education, college and/or trade schools.

The Elks are nationally the single largest provider of education scholarships outside the U.S. government.

Finally, an unusual and infrequently used word. “Facetious and/or facetiously,” written out and read, was found to contain all five, sometimes six, vowels in a single word, and in alphabetic order! Is there another such word? Could be. The students were encouraged to look up words in the dictionary whenever they heard a word they didn’t know.

Lake Almanor Lodge 2626 thanks Mrs. Geer, her students and principal John Goolsby for the time afforded for this yearly presentation.

Individuals in the community interested in becoming an Elks member may contact either Exalted Ruler Wes Scott or Elks Secretary Bud Wasson at 258-3557 or email  [email protected].