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Chuck & Donna Holt

The Ruth Tuttle Garber Memorial Scholarship is presented to honor the contributions of longtime educator Ruth Hodges Tuttle Garber. During her lifetime, Ruth witnessed the transition from horse-drawn buggy to the Space Shuttle. Born in 1899 in rural Illinois, Ruth left home at 13 to further her education. She worked at a boarding house for six years to pay her way through Western Illinois State High School College, striving toward her goal of becoming a teacher. Graduating with her teaching credentials at 20, Ruth married and then began her teaching career in Ramah, Colorado. The next few years found her working as a teacher and principal in small Colorado communities like Palmer Lake and Rye, where she taught every subject to students from 1st through 8th grade. Her duties included firing up the wood stove to keep those one-room classrooms warm in the frigid Colorado winters. Her passion was teaching music, and she excelled in producing musical presentations with her students. Ruth taught in the Denver Public Schools for over thirty years, concentrating her efforts in elementary education. During her tenure there she co-wrote an elementary arithmetic textbook and penned articles for teaching journals. She was instrumental in developing learning strategies for elementary mathematics using Legos as classroom manipulatives. At 65 she retired from Denver schools, and then taught elementary special education in San Jose, California until her mid-70s. Her focus throughout her career was making each child feel like the most important person in the classroom.