The buddy bench is a great way to make friends. (Source: WOIO)
AURORA, OH (WOIO) -
Recess at Craddock Elementary School in Aurora is pretty typical. Kids on slides, swings, and the monkey bars.
But off to the side is a brightly colored, inviting bench called the 'Buddy Bench."
"It's for if you don't have anybody to play with - and someone will walk up to you and see if you want to play," one student said.
It's a simple way to make a friend and be kind to others.
"When I was in first grade and I didn't have a friend, and they didn't have the buddy bench, like I didn't know what to do, so I just like walked around and now we have the buddy bench and now I can just sit right there and people will come and ask me," said one student.
A special video teaches the kids how to use the bench, and they quickly find out it really works!
"It helps my kids who are a little more shy that aren't sure how to ask someone and engage in that conversation, this makes it a little easier for that relationship to start," said Tami Mazzella, counselor.
The bench teaches problem-solving and empathy at a very young age.
"The children go and sit on it and magically someone else appears, and then you see them going off together so it's just a great tool for social and emotional growth in our little ones," said Principal Miller.
There's another bench at the Kindergarten building, and a parent is donating two more. One of them will be used by third, fourth, and fifth graders.
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