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Senior and seventh grade buddies connect online

Staff Illustrator Stella ’23

Despite not being able to be on campus due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the senior and seventh grade buddy program will continue into this year. The program began in 2008 when  Marlborough’s all school council and  administration wanted to create more connections between Upper School students and Lower School students. During these meetings, seniors and seventh graders participate in activities together where they talk to students they might not normally meet. In an in-person school year, the buddies participate in camp games like mafia or the human pretzel, as well as a three-legged race. They would meet two times a year to participate in groups with senior leaders, who help move the activities smoothly. Eloise ’24 was previously paired with a senior buddy and participated in games alongside her classmates. 

“I really enjoyed playing the games with my senior buddy and the other seniors because I got to meet people I wouldn’t usually talk to and get to spend time with them.” Eloise said. 

This year, 12th Grade Level Dean Alison Moser paired up seniors with seventh graders and had them participate in virtual activities together. Due to the high COVID-19 cases in Los Angeles, senior and seventh grade buddies will be participating in online games where they can meet each other virtually and get to know people in another grade. 

When the buddy program started over 10 years ago, it was difficult to find ways for the students to start a conversation that was not awkward. As a solution, Ms. Moser and council members paired up students with anything that they shared in common. 

“Council and I have started matching people with the same or similar name so they can remember their buddies’ names,” Moser said. “[We] have also been trying to match by similar birthdays.”

Moser believes that these shared attributes between buddies serve as a conversation-starter and  allow the students to have something to connect about when they meet. It also allows them to share something with someone in another grade that they might not have known or talked about to each other. 

“It’s a silly way for council and I to have fun with matching names, but also creates a connection between the senior and the seventh grader,” Moser said.

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