Pre-k kids and senior citizens help each other in Muskogee County
MUSKOGEE, Okla. (KTUL) - An unusual class set up is proving to be very beneficial to two very different groups of people.
Every morning the pre-k and kindergarten students at Benjamin Franklin Science Academy get on a bus and go across the street to The Springs nursing home.
Inside they find some of the people who live there, lined up to welcome them.
The children move down the line with smiles on their faces as they shake hands and hug the seniors.
One teacher tells us she wears waterproof mascara, because the greetings brings a tear to her eyes every day.
The little ones, call the older folks their grandfriends and the seniors are a part of every school day.
They join in, to listen to the kids read and they exercise together every morning.
Grandfriend Chloe Thomas said they can't get enough of the kids.
Thomas said, "Every time we see em they add something. They're oh so smart. we just enjoy being with em."
Dameekia Edwards has her son Daniel in the classes and she said the situation has helped him come into his own.
Edwards said, "It has helped him to really go up and talk to other people. He didn't do that before he started here. He was very shy. He had a hard time making friends and this has made it some much easier for him."
Aura Santos has two children in the classes.
She said they've learned to look past differences like age and disabilities, to engage people on a variety of levels.
Santos said, "There's a lady who cannot talk, but she can react with emotions and the kids like that. She's really happy. She's always smiling and the kids can interact with that smile."
Pre-k Teacher Elisa Moore said the children sense the wisdom, and love of their grandfriends,
while the seniors soak up, all the youthful energy.
Moore said it's touching, "I love seeing their faces, their interaction. There's always that one moment that will get you every day."
Members of two different generations, who are separated by seven or eight decades, are making life richer and fuller for each other.