The following was written by Rolland-Warner seventh grader Joleigh Shultz:
Throughout their years, learning about and taking care of kids is often a requirement for a teenager. Many take up babysitting for extra cash, have younger siblings that they are left with, and just need it for use in their young adult life — and this is just what Rolland-Warner’s Service Learning’s ‘Buddies’ group is teaching our seventh graders.
RW’s seventh graders, usually between the age range of twelve through fourteen, go down to our early childhood wing every Monday and Wednesday and are divvyed up into different classrooms with a variety of different younger children. They learn to sit with the kids, talk with them, play with them, and teach them things with different artistic and creative activities that are created by teachers, and also are learning to handle younger children’s often sporadic behaviors and playful attitudes.
With other kids, younger children often look up to them, being nearer their age. But previously mentioned, this isn’t just beneficial towards the youngers, it teaches the
seventh graders in the Service Learning class, patience, communication, and problem solving when interacting with the children.
Working side by side, Rolland Warner Middle School seventh graders and early childhood teachers’ work together to help the next generation of children grow and flourish in our unique personalities.
This has been a tremendous opportunity for young and old students. The program has now expanded to include some of the eighth grade service learning students participating with buddies in the afternoon.