If you have visited our lovely outdoor garden area behind the school this past week, you may have seen two beautiful, new blue benches placed along the pathway. One of them is known as a Buddy Bench. Children who are shy and anxious can sit at this bench and have others reach out, welcome, and include them in their activities.
Leading up to and including February 24th for Pink Shirt/ “Lift Each Other Up” Day, our students learned about the Buddy Bench, it’s purpose and how it can be used. We shared stories, develop a common language that will encourage empathy and foster community, upholding our S.P.I.R.I.T. here at Westwind.
We read Patty Brozo's book The Buddy Bench to the entire school. This story captures the raucous life of a schoolyard with a welcome twist: The kids who have been feeling left out of schoolyard games lead the charge to build a buddy bench, where any child can go to meet new friends.
As a follow up, Ms. Lai and Ms. Ludwig visited each division int he school and worked with our learners on how to use and respect the purpose of the bench and how it can spread care and kindness in our school.