Worlds collide as students, seniors meet

Two worlds came together earlier this month when some local senior citizens paid a visit to their first-grade pen pals from Monroe Elementary School.
A group of residents of Crosby Commons at Wesley Village began corresponding with the first graders during this past school year. The senior citizens shared their interests, favorite foods and even their ages, while the youngsters reciprocated with their hobbies, their pets’ names and their favorite subjects in school.
In early June, the seniors took a trip to Monroe Elementary School to meet their young friends, and, according to Crosby Commons Activity Director Kelly Coppola, the “visit was a big hit.”

Coppola said the students made a craft with the residents and did word searches, and the Crosby Commons residents brought the children mini journals to take home as a token of appreciation.
“When I thought about this program, I knew that both age groups had something very magical to share with the other,” said Coppola. “They all became instant friends through the power of writing. The children were so excited and both age groups enjoyed finally meeting face to face.”
The students involved in the pen pal project were first graders from Leslie Sekelsky’s class. The first-grade class assistant is Coppola’s daughter, Karly, who helped bring the residents and children together for this meeting.
The first graders were also assisted in their writing by Pat Flynn’s fourth grade class, who helped as “book buddies.”
Coppola said the children were “attentive, respectful and genuinely sincere when speaking to the residents. It was truly a special connection. Not to mention, the look on the children’s faces when they heard that some of the residents were almost 100 years old. Priceless.”