BEATRICE – There’s no minimum age requirement for coming up with a great idea….and Beatrice elementary school students can thank Stoddard Elementary second-grader William Stokes, for a new way to make friends.
His discovery of a YouTube video, with help from his father Jeremy, is resulting in the Beatrice School District establishing so-called “buddy benches” at school playgrounds.
William is a student in Mary Camacho-Cook’s class. The idea arose partly out of a class discussion about making friends, qualities to look for in friends and exhibiting good behavior. Principal Kevin Janssen recounts hearing the class discussion.
:29 “every playground”
Janssen says the buddy bench originated in Germany, and is popular on the east and west coasts.
As of today, each Beatrice elementary school will have a buddy bench on the playground.
:21 “kids together”
Janssen says William’s idea is a great way to help students make new friends and develop skills to help them later in life.
William sat before the Beatrice School Board last night, a little shy about saying anything about coming up with the idea.
:18 “kids are excited”
Janssen recognized William, the son of Jeremy and Christina Stokes, with a certificate for his terrific idea.
:08 “to others”
Each playground at the Beatrice elementary schools will now have a buddy bench.