Volunteers from a Northeastern University student service organization called Peace Through Play work with B-READY students at St. Augustine and St. Martin. Peace Through Play coordinator Avery Schnell wrote these reflections for their biannual newsletter:
"Every week we go to Lenox on Tuesday and Thursday and work with kids ages 4-10. On Tuesdays, School Climate joins volunteers to make absolutely amazing, interactive crafts! We like to utilize both outdoor and indoor spaces to play age-appropriate and culturally relevant, engaging games with the kids!
Kids are extremely active, and because we work with kids in an extremely wide age bracket, it can be hard to hold everyone’s attention. One of our most successful moments was when we were able to get one of the four year olds in our group to engage with “take as much as you want.” He was so excited to participate that he could barely stay in his seat! We have also had several sweet moments. For example, during the week of conflict resolution, one of the younger kids took the classroom’s attention and articulately to all of her peers why it is important to respect others and work together. It is moments like these that show the empowerment of play!"
School Climate coordinator Jess Mitchell wrote:
"At the [B-READY at St. Augustine and St. Martin] chapter of School Climate, first graders helped come up with a “recipe for respect” while making yummy no-bake granola bars. Kids shared a way to show respect before helping to put a healthy ingredient in the bowl or to stir the mixture in the bowl. These kids suggested dozens of ways to respect their families, friends, teachers, neighbors, and many more, and also showed respect to their classmates during the entire activity.
School Climate is PTP’s program for enriching the experience of peace with crafts and activities that the kids might not be doing in other groups. To supplement teaching through play, School Climate programs teach through creating and doing. At Lenox, volunteers alternated between working with a younger group and an older group, creating no-bake treats and going on scavenger hunts."
B-READY students are looking forward to more Peace Through Play activities this semester!