Fifth grade buddies show Kindergartners the ropes at lunch and recess

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Leela Basu (KH) and her buddy Zoe Anastas (5H) play together on playground.

COLONIAL PLAYGROUND — The fifth-grade-buddies program started back in October. Every fifth grader is paired up with a Kindergartner. The school does this to make the Kindergartners feel welcome and always have someone to look up to.

For the first week, the fifth graders ate lunch with their buddies and then went outside to play. Most of the boys taught their buddies how to play kickball. Most girls played anything that had to do with babies or house.

The fifth graders had to help the kindergartners get use to the playground rules, such as no climbing on the fence or on the rocks. Also, no climbing up the slide or hiding under the stairs, which many Kindergartners wanted to use as their “house.”

Emma Russello, (5V) a new student at Colonial, said, “I didn’t have the program at my old school, and at first, I thought it was strange, but then I got to know my buddy. She’s so cute!”

Some Kindergartners have siblings in the fifth grade. They were paired up with them. Many Kindergartners loved this. It also made them feel safer and more secure.

The Kindergartners were mostly shy at first, but after a week of hanging around with their buddies, it was like they were glued to them.

I remember when I was in Kindergarten. My buddy was a boy. As he trudged in the room, I could tell he wouldn’t be the type of buddy who did fairy houses or any girly stuff. I never got to do those things, like most of my friends did, but I did learn a lot from him. Now that I’m the fifth grader, I want to be an even nicer buddy.

As fifth grade teacher Mr. Alex Ventura said, “Now you’re the role model.”

The majority of the fifth graders and Kindergartners loved this learning experience. The program helps teach the fifth grade students responsibility. Here’s what some other students said:

  • “I like my buddy because she’s my neighbor. I like to play and chase her,” said Julia Findikyan (KM).
  • Jamie Moskowitz (KH) said she likes her buddy Lynn Dvorkin because “she brings me presents.”
  • Lynn Dvorkin (5V) said, “I like Jamie because she’s fun to play with and nice.”