Harker’s first Eagle Buddies event of the year was held at the lower school recently, uniting grades 3 and 10, who had previously only corresponded via letters and pictures.
That all changed when, just before noon on Oct. 3, the third graders assembled on the blacktop at the Bucknall campus, eagerly awaiting the arrival of their sophomore Eagle Buddies.
Clad in their brand new Eagle Buddies polo shirts, and holding signs indicative of their homerooms so that the upper school students could find them, the third graders were overjoyed to finally meet their big pals in person. Then all the students ate lunch together on the main field and were free to play sports (including some “getting-to-know-you” games), work on craft tables located at the edges of the turf, or simply relax for some free play.
Following closing remarks out on the Rincon field, the buddies said goodbye to one another. The sophomores returned to the upper school campus and the third graders went on with their day. But the buddies will continue to follow one another and bond over the course of the next several years in the successful mentoring program.
“Before I first met my eagle buddy, Maria, I was really nervous but excited at the same time,” said big buddy Shannon Richardson. “She was really sweet and somewhat quiet, which is expected from a third grader. We talked about the things she enjoyed most like tennis and reading. For me, being at the lower school again and hearing stories about it brought back so many happy memories. I miss those times so much now; if only we had nap time in high school! While we talked we ate and made friendship bracelets. My Eagle Buddies experience was definitely an enjoyable one and I can’t wait to see her again.”
“We were so excited to see the children become acquainted with their new buddies!” said Ken Allen, the lower school’s dean of students. He noted that upcoming Eagle Buddies events for these two grades will include a pajama day, service project and book drive. They will also continue to correspond via Thanksgiving, Valentine’s Day and St. Patrick’s Day cards.
And, according to Carol Zink, an upper school history teacher who helps coordinate the Eagle Buddies program, there will be a Clown Day for juniors and their grade 4 buddies in January, held at the upper school gymnasium.
Look for continued coverage of Eagle Buddies events in Harker News Online!