Reading is fun-damental at Fairview

book buddies program good for little and bigger kids

book buddies program good for little and bigger kids

November 05, 2007|By JENNIFER FITCH

Editor's note: This is the fourth in a continuing series of stories exploring the workings of a modern-day classroom. The Herald-Mail is spending parts of the 2007-08 school year visiting with and writing about a fifth-grade classroom at Fairview Elementary School in the Waynesboro (Pa.) Area School District. We will write stories monthly (and sometimes more often) about a variety of topics encountered by Bobbi Blubaugh's classroom of 27 students. Today's stories focus on the book buddies program and the school's first math night.

WAYNESBORO, Pa. - Pencil-drawn shapes, letters and numbers lined the handmade card given to Caleb Wilson.

Fifth-grader Marshall Miller made the card for Caleb, saying he hoped the younger student would use the card to further study those things.

Marshall also affixed a school picture of himself, although Caleb seemed unlikely to forget his new friend.

The book buddies grinned, joked, whispered and laughed after reading "Where's Mark?" on their first meeting Tuesday. The picture book discusses the bogeyman.


"I thought it would scare the bejeepers out of kids," Marshall said with a devilish smile.

Marshall and his 26 fifth-grade classmates took books, cards and lollipops to the 19 kindergartners taught by Geri Moats. The newly developed partnerships form the foundation of the two classes' book buddies program at Fairview Elementary School.

Other book selections made by Bobbi Blubaugh's fifth-graders included favorites like "The Very Hungry Caterpillar" and "One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish."

"The little kids are so cute. I thought I was going to step on them," Hannah Rowe said.

When asked if she remembered being that small, Hannah shook her head.

"I was taller," she said.

Krisi Rogers read "Little Red Riding Hood" to Kristina Shaffer, emphasizing the "Oh, how frightened I am!" line.

"It was good," Kristina said, adding that she didn't think the story was scary.

The 2007-08 school year will be the third partnership with Moats, Blubaugh said.

"We usually meet once a month, and this year we got started late," she said.

The book buddies started when Blubaugh and Moats discovered they had siblings in their classes.

"I used to teach kindergarten. I love doing it," Blubaugh said.

The younger students especially enjoy visiting the fifth-grade classroom, Blubaugh said.

"It's so cool to see each other in the hallways. Darien (Fann) said, 'My book buddy wouldn't let me go!'" Blubaugh said.

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