'Kids Teaching Kids' helps build self-esteem

This article submitted by Linda Stelling on 05/06/97.

The sixth graders in the Paynesville Area Middle School brushed up on their seat belt safety rules and D.A.R.E. lessons to teach elementary students.

The program was Kids Teaching Kids where students are involved with hands on learning activities, utilize positive decision making skills. The program helps the sixth graders who organize the lessons build self-esteem, public speaking skills and confidence.

The Kids Teaching Kids program was created in 1984 and continues to expand. Money for the program is generated from Driving Under the Influence driverís license reinstatement fees, the Department of Children, Families and Learning, and administered by the Minnesota Highway Safety Center at St. Cloud State University.

Bob Bowden, Paynesville sixth grade teacher, selects the peer leaders to teach students. They plan four 20 to 30-minute lessons stressing the use of seat belts and abstaining from drinking alcohol. The sixth graders taking part in Kids Teaching Kids prepared posters, demonstrations, skits, lessons plans to go along with their assigned topics.

ďThe program went well,Ē according to Bowden, ďI feel it is a good program because the students are learning something before teaching it to others. Kids will listen to other kids better than adults. The feed back was positive from the elementary school teachers,Ē he added.

Sixth graders working with third graders were: Stephanie Herzberg, Trisha Chevalier, Austin Fry, Kevin Mehr, Jodi Olmscheid, Chris Fuchs, Tom Flannigan, Eric Schoenberg, Ryan Wendlandt, Erik Leukam, Sam Thompson, Trevor Palmer, Morgan Martinson, Nicole Flint, Ashley Mackedanz, Scott Wendroth, Stacy Person, Amber Spanier, Chris Kern, and Darren Schultz.

Fourth grade: Jenny Berg, Amanda Beier, Todd Stelling, Mike Schlick, Cassie Chrast, Tasha Hilliard, Jon Downey, Tom Garding, Nicole Schlangen, Laura Stoneburner, Jon Knapp, Adam Christian, Lori Hanson, Shannon Bahner, Clinton Ness, and Corey Buermann.

Fifth graders: Amanda Mayer, Katie Bengtson, Russell Leyendecker, Josh Price, Rachel Sogge, Ann Stalboerger, Eric Miller, Brad Person, Sarah Ringstad, Susie Swyter, Levi Bundy, Pat Noonan, Chelsea Hartmann, Andrea Miller, Josh Teicher, and Milan Virant.

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