Hi kids.  My name ________________________________________.

 

I am a member of the ___________________________  Rotary Club.

 

Do you know what Rotary is about?

 

Usually none of them do, but occasionally one will ask, "Are you from the Rodeo?"  or "My dad had you come out to un-stop our sewer the other day.  They all laugh.

 

Then I say,

“Rotary is a group of older people that get together once a week and have lunch.  We try to do good things for other people.  We have heard that third grade is the most important year of your schooling because this year you will really begin to work on reading.  Reading is very important.

 

We all use reading nearly every hour of the day, whether we are in the store reading prices on the shelves, ordering food at a cafe, understanding street signs, looking at the newspaper, or filling out an application to get a job.

 

We are told that a dictionary is the most important tool in learning to read.  In a dictionary you will learn how to pronounce a word, how to spell it, and what it means.  We think it is also important for your teacher that all of you have the same dictionary as you learn as a class how to use it.

 

Your library probably doesn't have enough copies of the same book that you all can be learning together.  The book I am giving you is written just for kids your age.

 

I am going to give each of you your very own book to keep forever.  It has your name inside it because we cared enough to learn your name.  There is a note inside to your parents.  Please show it to them.”

 

We then put the box of books in front of the teacher and ask them to read the names one-by-one and then hand the book to the Rotarian.

 

Only the teacher should read the student’s name. A child's name is his most precious possession.  It identifies him from all others.  If we mispronounce their name it might be a terrible embarrassment to them.

 

The Rotarian then presents the book to the child as they come up with an attitude of caring, a smile and a pat on the back, and perhaps a word of praise.

 

Teachers are also given books to put them in the loop and encourage them to take some time showing kids how to use the dictionary.

SAMPLE SPEECH

Website designed by Jim Weems of the The Rotary Club of Bixby