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Elementary students practice reading to senior citizens

Posted: 4:48 AM, May 30, 2019
Updated: 2019-05-30 07:48:58-04
2nd graders read to seniors

In a classroom full of 2nd graders, it can be hard to keep students focused.

A teacher at Nichols Elementary in Bakersfield found a way to keep her bright-eyed pupils on the right path.

“Sometimes math gets hard for me, but I keep trying and then in end it gets easy,” Mlak Alamri, a 2nd grade student, said.

Ms. Johns, Mlak’s teacher, said she has big goals for her students. One of them is to practice reading every single day.

However, she knows that assigning the same activity can get boring for young children, so she decided to switch things up.

“I thought of this sometime ago, earlier this school year … I thought it would be a great idea for the students to interact with senior citizens and to have practiced reading their books too at the same time,” Teresa said.

Her students read to a group of women from the Columbus Estates retirement community once a week.

“I think they just do remarkably well. They seem to be reading at a higher level than I would expect,” Marian Eroyer, a senior citizen at Columbus Estates, said.

“It’s just such a positive experience. It’s just awesome I like it all its such a great time for each side involved,” Teresa said.

Everyone agrees, it’s hard to say who enjoys it more.

“I just love children. They’re very sweet with us too. They’re really nice little kids,” Marian said.

“They just listen, and I can read big words to them, and if I can’t spell them, they can tell me how to spell them,” Mlak said.

This week was the last time these 2nd graders had a chance to read to women from Columbus Estates before summer vacation, but Teresa says she’s excited to start the program back up for her students next year.

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