Buddy Bench

The Buddy Bench – Can an 8 Year Old Boy Change School Playgrounds Forever?

Have you ever felt lonely at recess?  Christian Bucks, a 3rd grader at Roundtown Elementary School in York, PA, is on a mission to end playground loneliness.  And he is making waves with the help of the Buddy Bench.

The Buddy Bench is a place where children can go if they have no one to play with.  Kids who see someone on the bench can then go over and ask them to play.  It is a simple, but very smart idea, and it is now building friendships all over America.

When Christian was in 1st grade, his family was thinking about moving to Germany.  While looking at school brochures he saw a photo of a playground with a special bench for anyone who was lonely.

Although he did not move to Germany, he liked this idea so much that he discussed it with his teacher and principal at Roundtown.  They also thought it was a great idea and soon after the school bought their first Buddy Bench!  The kids loved it!

Since then, children and schools across America have learned about it and the benches are starting to show up all over! Christian’s action and proactivity are living proof that a child can change the world.  All it takes is a good idea, some passion and follow through.

Check out Christian’s story and the growth of the Buddy Bench movement in this inspiring video below:

This video shows how another school brought the Buddy Bench to their playground:

Additional Resources

Topics for Discussion:

  • Have you ever been lonely on the playground or seen someone who was lonely?  What impact do you think the Buddy Bench might have at your school?
  • What character traits does Christian exhibit?

Take Action:

Teacher Features:

  • Here is a link to a Critical Reading Skills worksheet that you can use for elementary school students.
  • Here is a link to a Critical Reading Skills worksheet that you can use for middle school students.


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