1st & 6th Grade Reading Buddies
By Member Kimberly Beachy
October 10, 2023

Reading Buddies provides an opportunity for students who wouldn’t normally interact with each other to connect and form lasting relationships. Buddies look forward to spending time together, and by engaging in this fun activity, students develop a love for reading and talking about books. Buddies are always excited to see each other in the hallways, out at recess, or during an all-school event.

Participating in Reading Buddies benefits students in multiple ways. For younger students, they get to hear a more experienced reader model how to read fluently, with expression and phrasing, and they get 1:1 assistance as they build their own skills and practice reading aloud. Younger students can engage in conversations with their buddy about the books they’re reading and observe their buddy following the rules and demonstrating positive behavior. The buddy becomes a role model for them and someone who can offer encouragement and advice.

Older students benefit by being able to develop their own literacy skills and talking about books. If they happen to be a struggling reader, they can gain confidence by reading to a younger student in a less intimidating environment, often with an easier book. Because they are being looked up to, older students are motivated to behave responsibly and demonstrate positive character traits such as being patient and kind. Being a buddy gives them the opportunity to develop leadership and problem-solving skills in an authentic, meaningful way.