Narrative Care project encourages inter-generational learning between youth, seniors

Tribune-Post Staff
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Salem student Kara Steeves enjoys a spin around the dance floor at the Drew Nursing Home, courtesy of one of the residents taking part in a Narrative Care project. ALEXANDRY EATON PHOTO

“It is so super cool to visit the Drew!” shouted Kathleen Simpson in anticipation of her final class visit to the local nursing home.

Over the school year, she and her peers from Mme. Reinsborough-Wadden’s Grade 4 class have participated in a narrative care project in an effort to encourage inter-generational learning within the Sackville community.

On June 16, the students presented their final projects detailing the biographical stories they learned from their partnered residents. Either individually or in pairs, each student met regularly with a chosen “buddy” at the Drew and after hours of interviews, chats, and fun bonding activities (ex: the residents schooled the students in bowling!), the students created projects highlighting the lives of their new friends.

These wonderfully wacky projects took the form of “Top Ten Coolest things about my partner” lists, a demonstration of one student’s impressive new waltzing skills thanks to her partner, biographical songs to the tune of Jingle Bells, resident-inspired poetry, and perhaps the most beautiful “Things We have in Common” lists describing the common ground found surprisingly easily between these 10-year-olds and their newfound senior friends.

If you’d like to check out the students’ work, please stop by the Drew Nursing Home in the coming weeks as it will be on display for everyone to enjoy. The students would like to thank both the residents and staff of the Drew Nursing Home for giving them such a warm welcome, as well as the J.E.A. Crake Foundation for the generosity and support in this important project.

If you have ever thought of volunteering at the Drew, please contact Jay Bohan to do so immediately: as one student stated after visiting, “this place is amazing, when do I get to move in?!”

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