Building a School Community

What’s better than buddy reading? Seventh grader Elizabeth Sidor enjoys reading with Kindergartener Jayden Creel.

Building a School Community


On Wednesday, November 23, the students of Onekama School gave thanks for the many blessings provided by the close relationships afforded by their K-12 school. 


“A great advantage of having all grades under one roof is that it allows us to develop bonds between older and younger students,” explained Onekama Middle School teacher Megan McCarthy.


“On this day before Thanksgiving, we thought it would be a great opportunity to bring multiple grade levels together to strengthen the bonds of our community,” added McCarthy. “We can give older students a chance to be role models, and we can provide a meaningful learning opportunity for our younger students.” 


Middle school students moved around the elementary school on Wednesday, helping with a number of projects and getting to make new friends in the younger grades. Some classes explored apps on student iPads, built towers together, and constructed Lego cities. 


Others spent time reading aloud to younger students, or listening to their buddy build reading fluency and stamina as they read aloud to them. Students also helped with structured writing assignments and art projects.


The day was designed to combine fun, learning, and a chance to grow new friendships. 


Concluded McCarthy: “In this season of Thanksgiving, these simple acts of togetherness and respect for one another are among the most valuable educational experiences we can offer our students.”


Onekama first grader Garrett Desamareaux and eighth grader Sara Bromley show off Garrett’s Thanksgiving project, which the two worked on together.

Eighth and first graders worked together on an art project.
Seventh grade students enjoyed learning from some expert Kindergarten builders!

Onekama seventh grader Maegan Hrachovina works with first grader Fable Wisseman on a writing assignment.