Kira Frahm and her sixth-grade classmates at Beach Middle School spent the last 5-6 weeks writing and editing special stories for their kindergarten buddies at North Creek Elementary School.
“The writing has gone through self review, parent review, peer review and teacher review,” said sixth-grade teacher Meg Emlaw of the writing assignment that explores children’s literature, voice and age-appropriate vocabulary.
“It’s a chance for the students to publish,” Emlaw said, adding, “All the books are really beautiful and there’s a lot of great writing for the end of 6th grade.”
Plus, she said, this year, the illustrations in the books are just outlines so they serve as a coloring book platform that the older and younger students worked together to ‘colorize,’ during the special event on May 22.
“It’s been exciting and it’s been stressful,” Emlaw said of the deadline to have the books completed in time for the big unveiling.
The 6th-grade buddy program has been ongoing for many years. It pairs up a sixth-grader with a kindergartener early in the spring when the older students learn about the younger one’s family and friends and what they like. Armed with this individual information, the Beach Middle School students get to work writing a story that includes illustrations for their younger buddy.
“Both schools look forward to it each year,” said North Creek Principal Marcus Kaemming.
“We love partnering with the kindergarten students at North Creek,” said Nick Angel, principal at Beach Middle School. “This is a great Chelsea tradition and what’s cool is, the sixth-graders remember it from when they were in kindergarten.”
Alex, a student at Beach, said it was probably more fun to be on the kindergarten side of the story. “You don’t have to do as much.”
But, he said it was fun to go back to his old school and relive the memories of the years he spent there.
Alex was paired with Bob, who is a fan of Power Rangers and Sponge Bob, so the story he wrote for his buddy involved he main character wanting to attend a Sponge Bob convention but his sister did all she could to prevent him from going.
Kira was paired with Alyssa and the pair’s special story included a princess and fairies and magic and a moral of “never give up.”
From “Magical Mittens” to “The Lost Crown,” there was a “Splash with a Dash of Glitter,” “A Final Shot,” and “The Frog Prince” to enchant and enthrall, carrying on a traditional that was popular with all.