Big Sister/Little Sister Program Makes A Comeback

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Abby Shepherd

The transition from elementary school to 6th grade can be hard for many girls. Most of the students do not know each other well and maybe scared. The Big Sister/Little Sister program is a way for the 8th-grade girls of Westminster to try to connect with and make friendships with the 6th-grade girls.  About twelve 8th graders lead the rest of the 8th graders in activities and games that will help 6th graders learn how to handle situations and develop friendships. The leads come together every week to try and plan new ways for the big sisters to interact with the little sisters. 

The ultimate goal of the program is for everyone to feel included as well as impact. One of the leads in this program, 8th grader Caroline Dolan states,” I would say it has impacted me by helping me learn how to help someone younger than me, how to engage and teach them. I have tried to make a relationship with them that feels like I’m their friend, rather than me being the older person.”

Many of the girls, both in 8th and 6th grade, have said how the Big Sister/Little Sister program has helped them form a relationship with the person that they were paired with. It helps them know their partner’s likes and dislikes, as well as how their year is going, regarding friendships, grades, and even family life. “ Talking to my little sister brings me back to 6th grade and makes me remember what it’s like, and helps me understand her struggles,” says Dolan. “I know 6th grade can be hard, especially making friends. I hope that I, as well as others, can help their little sisters through 6th grade and make it more fun with less stress.”

The past couple years, the Big Sister/Little Sister program has not been a big part of the Middle School and has almost been forgotten. However, thanks to the leads and the help of all of the 6th and 8th grade girls, the program is back this year and better than ever. With luck and people who care deeply about the program, it will stay a big part of the 6th and 8th grade girls’ lives.