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Elmbrook Rotary Club Donates New Dictionaries to Students

Milwaukee, WI (2/1/16) — In an effort to promote kids’ interest in vocabulary and reading, Diane’s Dictionaries, a program of the Elmbrook Rotary Club, delivered dictionaries to children at Capitol West Academy on Monday, February 1, 2016.

Rotarian Barry James created Diane’s Dictionaries in memory of his wife, Diane, who died unexpectedly in 2009. “My wife was a great reader,” said Mr. James. “And we are giving dictionaries to young people to encourage them to read and learn words.”

Capitol West Academy, where Rotarians have tutored children for several years, was the first school in the Diane’s Dictionaries program, seven years ago. Other schools have been added since then.

First graders at CWA got a picture dictionary and fourth graders got a regular dictionary.

“I’m so excited ‘Diane’s Dictionaries’ came to CWA again. The students who received the dictionaries last year used them in the classroom all the time,” said Jay Gilkay, fourth grade teacher at Capitol West Academy. “I’m sure this year’s students will use theirs a lot, too.”

Students are allowed to keep the books and are given name labels as part of the book distribution.

Upon receiving their dictionaries, students immediately began looking up information. Popular research included looking to see if Barack Obama was in the books (he was), finding America on a map of the world and reviewing whose faces are on the one- and five-dollar bills.