CMDS 6th Grade-SK Buddies Program Connects Students

by Shannon Nanney

This year marks a milestone in the CMDS SK-6th Grade Buddies program.

CMDS SK Teacher Shannon Nanney

The CMDS Class of 2019 was the first group of SK students to participate in what has become a beloved tradition at Christ Methodist Day School.

The buddies program began as an outreach, providing seasoned CMDS students an opportunity to mentor, guide and encourage those younger students spending their last year in Early Childhood. Rebecca Gieselmann, CMDS Counselor, serves as the buddy program adviser and coordinates activities.

At least once a month, the Buddies come together to enjoy fellowship and fun. Students have enjoyed everything from making crafts together to sitting alongside their Buddies during special Chapel services. In February, the group made Valentine’s Day cards for senior living centers.

When the SK’ers perform at their End of the Year program in May, the Class of 2019 will join them onstage to sing the Benediction for one of their final times at CMDS. (Talk about a tearjerker! Parents, make sure you bring Kleenex to this one.)

Over the years I have had many opportunities to see how important this tradition is to the younger children. One of my students, Jack, told me last week: “Friday is my absolute favorite day…just because I get to see my 6th grade buddy on the playground.”

The older children appreciate the time as well, as they are setting great examples for those behind them to follow.

“I truly don’t know who is more excited to see whom – the SK’er or the 6th grader,” said Nell Womack, 5th and 6th Grade Literature teacher. “There is equal excitement for both parties whenever their paths cross.”

I recently saw this precious Facebook post from the mother of a boy I taught in SK. These were the comparison pictures of her son as the SK buddy (left) and now as the 6th grader with his buddies!

It’s a vivid reminder of how these elementary school years fly by so quickly. And it’s yet another clear reason why “We Choose CMDS!”


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