Local third graders received new dictionaries from the Hesperia Elks Monday.


"The students learn about community [in third grade]," said Principal Sue Yarbrough.


Hesperia Elks Lodge 2646 presented a dictionary to every third grade student on October 27. A total of 138 "A Students Dictionary" dictionaries were given away, at a cost of $1.70 per book.


In a nationwide program, the Elks have given millions of dictionaries to third graders. Hesperia students will also benefit from this program. Participating Hesperia schools will receive one dictionary per student. When the program is completed, Hesperia Elks Lodge 2646 will have distributed 1,583 dictionaries.


"It's so important for the children to know how to read," said Annette Ross, Chairperson of Youth Activities for the Elks. "Kids really like their dictionaries."


Walking in single file, seven classes of third graders were lead into the student's assembly room, by their teachers. Roll by roll, the children sat down.


Elk's member Ross presented the dictionaries to the students. Principal Sue Yarbrough, Assistant Principal Tom Kirk and the students' teachers, were also there to lend their assistance.


A chorus of thanks rang out from the students after they received their new books.


"Treasure these books, they should last you all the way through college," Yarbrough told the students.


Yarbrough held up her dictionary and turned to various pages. The kids followed suit, intently studying their new books.


"Look at all the words, look at the multiplication tables," she said. The children cheered as they continued to look through their new books.


"This will help with the student's vocabulary expansion," said Yarbrough.


"The excitement you showed rubbed off on the kids," said Ross to Yarbrough.


Sharon Strickland can be reached at 956-7827 or at sharon@hesperiastar.com.