Reading buddies unite in prayer


Pictured are first and eighth graders from St. Joseph’s Catholic School during their first week of school, praying for each other and praying for peace. (Photo submitted)

For the past 28 years, St. Joseph’s Catholic School in Rice Lake has adopted a peer reading approach.

First and eighth graders are paired up throughout the school year as part of the Reading Buddies program. They meet every Friday, and it is quickly becoming the most anticipated day of the week for these students.

Eighth grade students have a responsibility to help younger students with their reading skills and also to set a good example. The eighth graders have done a great job helping to develop the academic and social skills of the first graders, school officials said.

Rochelle McRaith, a retired St. Joseph School teacher and now daily recess volunteer, has been involved in this program since its inception. At that time, she felt that eighth grade students needed an opportunity to reach out to others and recognize that they have a duty to be good role models for younger preschool students. in the eighth grade.

Grade 8 head teacher Christie Nielsen said: “It is heartwarming to see older students getting excited about partnering with a younger student. They still remember their boyfriend when they were in first grade. Reading Buddies at St. Joseph’s Catholic School has become a tangible way to show the love of Jesus to another person.

First grade teacher Melissa Handorf really enjoyed watching the students grow and connect with each other.

“They’re really starting to bond with each other, and it’s a joy to see their love for reading grow, she said.

This school year, the reading buddies decided to use prayer to start their time together. The students said they would like their prayers to help unite the community and ask for peace in our world.

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