NEW HAVEN — A “buddy bench,” aimed at making no child feel left out, is being placed on the playground at New Haven Elementary School (NHES), thanks to a Wahama senior.
Jacob Fisher presented the bench to NHES Principal Walter Raynes on Wednesday, as part of his senior capstone.
The bench, according to Raynes, is for children who feel they have no one to play with or talk to during recess. The student sits on the buddy bench and when the other students observe the child, they are to show kindness and invite the student to join in their fun and games. Teachers at the school explained the concept to their classes prior to Fisher’s presentation.
“The buddy bench is an initiative trending in schools across the country, and we hope that our bench helps to develop positive relationships among our students,” Raynes said.
Fisher said he plans to attend West Virginia University in the fall to study engineering, but wanted to do something for his senior project that would give back to the community. He added he had heard about the buddy benches a year or so ago, and decided it was something he could do to possibly help someone.
The senior said the wooden bench took him about 20 hours to complete. He chose to paint it in bright colors that matched an inspirational poster that hangs on the wall in the elementary school office.
“Jacob is a great young man, and did a great job on the bench,” said Raynes. “He sincerely wants to help our students with their social skills.”
Mindy Kearns is a freelance writer for Ohio Valley Publishing, email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.