The Lower School Buddy program builds communal connections across grades through monthly meetings. Recently, Kindergarten and Grade 4 students engaged in a collaborative learning lesson that reinforced academic skills in both grades.
The lesson arose from a brainstorming session where Kindergarten teacher Bettina Greenberg mentioned that her class was studying how seeds grow into plants to Grade 4 teacher Katie Baum.
Using keywords from the Kindergarten unit, Baum drafted text about seed germination, which she shared with her class. Students were tasked with independently researching the information and gathering data to create scientific illustrations of the process. Emphasis was placed on creating illustrations that were detailed and accurately diagrammed while keeping the intended audience in mind.
“The students were aware that they were presenting to the Kindergarteners,” said Baum, “so they made relatable sentences that were concise and made images large enough for the students to color in.”
The illustrations and text were combined into a single class book which was shared with the Kindergarten students during the grades’ Buddy meeting last week. The older students were impressed with their younger peers' interest and knowledge.
“I was so excited to see the reactions of the Kindergarteners when I read it to them,” said Ahana Hooda ’32. “I was very surprised that my partner knew a lot about seeds already and was becoming a feracious reader herself."
“They were explaining additional details about the seeds that they learned in class,” said Greyson Cosgrove ’32. “I learned something new too!”