Today, people rely on sources like Facebook, Twitter or Instagram to share what is going on in their lives. Social media is often used as an outlet to express emotions. But, not everyone has a social media account, or even wants one. Children and older adults are often left out of the social media scene, but the need and desire to share is just as strong.
Brewster Place is coordinating efforts with schools in the area to build relationships between senior adults and children. Through the Brewster Buddy Pen Pal Program, both local school kids and Brewster residents enjoy learning and sharing their worlds. For students, the program can enhance their reading and writing skills, and can help improve literacy. The program can aid in cognitive health with older adults, combat loneliness, and reduce elderly depression and anxiety. Plus, both groups get to enjoy the anticipation on receiving the next letter. You see, having a pen pal never goes out of style. Social media doesn’t hold a candle to the worth of a handwritten letter!
For students, the program can enhance their reading and writing skills, and can help improve literacy. The program can aid in cognitive health with older adults, combat loneliness, and reduce elderly depression and anxiety. Plus, both groups get to enjoy the anticipation on receiving the next letter.
The pen pal program has been so wonderful having our residents connect to children in our community! It has sparked much joy for them and for their sweet pen pals. Here is a section from a sweet letter we received from a 3rd grade teacher of one of the schools taking part in the program..
“I wish all of you could have seen HOW EXCITED the children were when I opened up the large envelope and distributed all of the individual mail to the students!! They literally danced with happiness! They were thrilled to pieces, and danced and danced and hugged their letters, and just bubbled over with delight!
There was so much joy–the kids dashed out quick letters full of love and drawings–they have so much they want to say to their Brewster Buddies, and yet are still developing the skills to express everything in writing!”
“It was such a sight–the kids read and re-read their letters, then ran to a friend and shared the letter with them, and then ran to another friend, repeat. It touched my heart to witness how very much these letters mean to my students.” Exclaimed educator Ann H.
This just melts my heart! And what is so wonderful about pen pals is ANYONE CAN BECOME ONE!
Have a peachy day and don’t forget to smile!