By Sue Tiffin
Published June 19 2018
Laughter cheers and encouragement filled the Stuart Baker Elementary School gym on May 31 when Grade 2/3 French Immersion students invited Extendicare residents to an annual day of fun activities and togetherness.
“It’s a good way for the community to interact with each other” said teacher Madame Zahab. “[Students] practice their kindness being responsible and compassionate but this is a great way to practice it with people they don’t know.”
Zahab noted the gathering might particularly be appreciated by students who don’t get to see their grandparents very often.
Janine Burk stopped by to her son Easton’s class with daughter Ellie. She said she was coming to enjoy the intergenerational program and knew residents would get a kick out of young Ellie as well. Burk used to work at Haliburton Highlands Health Services and said Easton has had the opportunity to be around seniors often including while volunteering at Christmas.
“It’s very good for him to learn gentleness and kindness” she said.
“It is really exciting for me to see all the residents” said Easton who is Grade 2. “They’re really nice to me and I like when I say hi to them.”
Mary Ellen Martin was enjoying games set up for the event including volleyball and a fishing activity.
“It’s just a lot of fun with the children” she said. “It sends you back.”
Roy Fine said the day was a lot of fun especially “kids shouting and laughing.”
Gene Thom wasn’t sure how she got repeated strikes during a bowling game a feat that delighted the students but attributed it to “sheer luck.”
“I’m really impressed [with the day]” she said. “It’s just wonderful to have this opportunity. The kids are enjoying it so much. They all look happy.”
The Extendicare residents will host the SBES students to their home on June 22.