The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

State News

December 5, 2013

How second-grader is making sure everyone has a friend

YORK — A central Pennsylvania second-grader has come up with a great idea for kids at his school: a buddy bench.

Christian Bucks saw that some of his friends at Roundtown Elementary School didn’t have anyone to play with. So he convinced his school to bring in a buddy bench.

Here’s how it works: If students feel lonely on the playground, they can go to the buddy bench and another student will come to the bench and ask if they want to play or talk.

Christian’s mom, Alyson Bucks, said in The York Daily Record report that her son first learned of the buddy bench concept when the family started discussing possibility moving abroad temporarily.

During their research, Christian’s parents showed their children a few international schools, and a buddy bench at a school in Germany caught Christian’s attention.

“We encouraged and supported him every step of the way,” Alyson Bucks said, “but it was the Roundtown faculty and staff who brought the idea to fruition. We are so thankful for their support in embracing this idea.”

Roundtown Principal Matthew Miller described Christian as a child who loves making friends and making sure others have friends.

“We show we care about others when we ask others to play,” Christian said. “I also hope that new friendships will be made because of the buddy bench.”

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What is the biggest key to reducing gun violence in Johnstown?

Tackling the area's drug problem.
Controlling folks moving into city housing.
Monitoring folks in treatment centers and halfway houses.
Tougher sentencing by the court system.
More police on the streets.

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