Buddy Reading Program

Our school is really big on reading buddies --- { which I love BTW }...I'm curious how many of you have this type of program set up as well.  We meet with a 5th grade class every Friday and they sit and read with their buddy. It really is the cutest thing.  I love watching them read and interact.
*  However...now that in So. Cal we have gone up to 30 students in K-2 we decided to split up our class.  We used to have the 5th graders come down to my room and spread out to read with their buddies.  Now we think it will be easier for 1/2 of the class to go to the 5th grade room and 1/2 stay in mine with their 5th grade buddies.  Otherwise 66 bodies in my lil ole' room might be a bit LOUD.  My ears hurt just thinking about it. LOL... *  
Prior to the first meet up I meet with the teacher and we look over our class lists to see who would be great with who -- it's always been a blast.
We also do fun seasonal activities together as well.  For instance - hot cocoa at Christmas with a book exchange, writing new years goals together at the beginning of the year, etc.  We make them a gift at Christmas too - a snowman ornament from a tongue depressor...
We also use them as buddies to help if a student is struggling with issues on the playground, etc.  Here is a picture of some of the buddies.  We were buddies with my daugther's class from a couple years ago -- she's in the pink fuzzy Christmas stocking hat with the braids and cute smile. :oD


At the end of the year we have a mini field trip to the park across the street and have a picnic with our buddies.  I love building community!
We share our campus with a special ed preschool that has a typical peer program. ( mainly focusing on autisim ) we have now also adopted a preschool classroom - adopt a pup.  It's the cutest thing.  But we only meet with them 2x's a year for a craft project.  Tell me what you think...do you guys have buddies?


9 comments

  1. I teach in a rural school (now) and we don't have buddies, however...I have talked to 4th, 5th and 6th grade to see if there was anyone interested and have not heard back from them. So glad to read this so that I can remind them and try to get this going! I love the book exchange idea for the Holiday!
    I am your newest follower! Thanks for finding me!
    Crazy About First Grade

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  2. Vicky,
    I have had a buddy class in the past, but this year want to focus more on reading. How do you organize this? Do you ask the buddies to read specific types of books or to focus the discussion on certain questions? Or do your kiddos do all of the reading? How long do you spend together? In the past, I have done this sporadically with a friend's class, but this year we were assigned buddy classes. I am paired with someone who had never done this before, so I want to really make it work.
    Thanks for posting about this!
    Camille
    An Open Door

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  3. Hi Camille,
    Most of the organizing happens before we start the buddy reading - training, pairing the kids up, etc. You will have to work closely with the buddy teacher at first. We have done buddy reading for years. We allow 30 minutes and the 5th grade teacher 'trains' her kids on how to listen to the reading, model it at times and ask questions about the story. It's amazing how well they do with the first graders. We usually meet in my room because I'm the one with appropriate, grade level picture books, etc. I hope that helps. :o) Good luck!

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  4. Ah... I miss doing buddies. I used to do it with a fifth grade class, too. But when the extra kids came along... we decided to end it. Maybe we can try out the split class idea.

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  5. My third grade group buddies up with Kinder. Afterwards I always think that Kinder teachers are the most patient people in the world! It does get a little noisy so splitting the group is a great idea!

    Ms. M
    http://thirdgradegems.blogspot.com

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  6. When I was in elementary school, we had reading buddies, and I remember loving it. When I was little, I was nervous being with an older kid, but it was great reading practice for both of us. The school that I'm at right now does not do this, but I would to start it with my first graders.

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  7. I teacher second graders and they read with K buddies. I love it because my readers who do not have a lot of confidence feel great when they can help the non-readers in the K class. :)

    Casey
    Second Grade Math Maniac

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  8. Geez . . *I teach second graders . . .

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  9. I love having reading buddies for my kinder kiddos. Unfortunately with all of the new demands being placed on us lately......we are finding it hard to make the time for it......and honestly, the older grades are reluctant to take time away from their instruction. I'm hoping to work it in at some point....maybe as some type of reward or fun Friday activity. It's sad that it can't be like it used to---we used to do reading buddies at least once a week!!!!

    Thanks for stopping by my blog! I was glad to find your blog as well and can't wait to read more! :-)

    Debbie
    K is for Kinderrific

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