Seniors and Children Meet After a Year of Letter Writing

OSWEGO – In September of last year, Patty  Dixon’s fourth grade class at Kingsford Park School and residents of Bishop’s Commons met on paper.

The students and seniors have been writing to each other twice a month this school year getting to know each other, and talking about everything from hobbies to current events.

Resident Ellen Ridgeway is shown with her pen pal Jacob Lenehan.
Resident Ellen Ridgeway is shown with her pen pal Jacob Lenehan.

The pairs recently met face to face in the culmination of a year long pen pal program called KPS Connections.

Students arrived by bus and were greeted by their resident pen pals where hugs and gifts were exchanged.

Students then put on a “variety” show of sorts showcasing their many talents in music, arts, academics, and sports.

A barbecue luncheon was then served where students joined residents at their tables and shared in lunch and conversation.

“This is the third year that we have participated in this program and once again the outcome exceeded all expectations,” noted Julie Chetney, senior living coordinator. “Everyone involved learned the value of friendship and the benefits of interaction and relationships across generations.”

Fourth graders also toured the residence, visited apartments, and stopped at the Resident Country Store to do some shopping, where chocolate was the popular item.

The day ended with a “Show for all Ages” presented by Joe Trionfero with some friendly competition of movie and music trivia.

Dixon noted, “My students are often amazed at the things they have in common with their pen pals; sharing stories, pictures, drawings, cards, and time has had a great impact on myself and my students.”