North ENL Buddy Program

North ENL Buddy Program Photo

The ENL Buddy Program hosted its first paint afternoon with the help of the art department, specifically Ms. Kristen Gebhard and Ms. Sumitra Bruce. This activity provided English Language Learners the opportunity to enjoy an afternoon of conversation and art instruction at North High School. More than 30 students enjoyed an hour and a half of guided painting.

During the paint afternoon Ms. Gebhard instructed students to paint a landscape of "Trees in the Moonlight" where students learned the skills of blending, shading, and highlighting their artwork. Peer partners worked together to help each other while Ms. Bruce and the ENL teachers circulated and assisted with the artwork.

"I loved this activity," said Yerlin Rozón, senior mentor in the Buddy Program. "I like art and I took this piece of art home and put it on my wall. My dad was impressed by my artwork and wants me to make another one for his office," she said.

The ENL Buddy program at VS North High School meets on the last Wednesday of every month. In this program, veteran English Language Learners pair up with new students to help them acclimate to our school community. Student mentors apply to participate and are evaluated by a committee of teachers who look to see that they represent North's Core Values of respect, integrity and kindness. Mentors are assigned new students as "mentees" and they work throughout the year to build friendships and bridges with the North community. Monthly activities such as a holiday letter writing campaign to soldiers overseas, making peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for the INN at Hempstead, and other social events focus on charity and peer relationships.