WILMINGTON, MA — At a recent School Committee Meeting, Shawsheen Elementary School Principal Lisa King announced the installation of a “Buddy Bench” at her school.
Students utilize the bench during recess when they are having difficulty finding a friend or group to play with. If a child is seen sitting alone on the bench, classmates are trained to approach the child and ask him or her to play.
King introduced the three students — Julianna, Liam and Craig — who wrote letters to the school’s guidance counselor, asking for such a bench. The students read their letters to the School Committee.
“Mrs. Gibbs, out Guidance Counselor, worked all summer to make this happen,” King told the Committee.
King also thanked the Wilmington Educational Foundation and the Cottini Family for funding the project, and Wilmington DPW for installing the bench.
The school’s Technology Integration Specialist, Kim Provensal, worked with students to create a video highlighting the five rules surrounding the use of the bench. All students watched the video during a recent school-wide assembly.
The video was screened for the Committee and can be viewed HERE. (The required password is 0302.)
“In second grade, these young leaders came up with the idea,” said King. “In third grade, they helped create the video.”
“Thank you for sharing your letters and your video,” responded School Committee Chair Julie Broussard.
A Buddy Bench was also installed at the Boutwell Early Childhood Center at the end of last school year.
(NOTE: Cover photo of bench is from Provensal’s Twitter account.)
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