HARRISON, N.Y. -- Harrison Avenue Elementary School students are buddying up to bridge the grade gap.
The students and teachers at the school have created a unique buddies system to "foster a sense of community early in the education process," representatives said. As part of the system, kindergarten students receive fifth grade “buddies” and first grade students are partnered with fourth grade “buddies”.
The buddies get together each month for a curriculum-based activity such as reading, writing celebration, an art or music combination, or a math and science activity.
“The older children also escort their younger buddies to school assemblies," noted HAS first grade teacher Debbie Podjednic. "The fourth and fifth graders learn responsibility and leadership by helping the younger students maintain appropriate audience participation and behavior."
The fourth and fifth grade buddies also work with HAS school psychologist Caren Feldman focusing "on positive peer interactions in the form of bucket filling or anti-bullying campaigns," representatives said.