Short Lives Meet Long Lives
Mr. Craft, a history teacher at Duxbury High School, started Students to Seniors club in hopes of exposing teenagers to elderly residents in the community through conversation and connections with those who have been through a long life.
“I like old people and I think kids are awkward so they would never go there on their own because it would be awkward. Kids would be like, ‘why would they want to talk to me?’ but the bottom line is the older people want to hear about their lives now,” said Mr. Craft.
Mr. Craft and the students go to The Village at Duxbury once a month where they sit in a circle and just chat as one big group and in several small groups. The meeting is advertised at The Village, so the residents who want to attend can do so.
Mary M, a Duxbury High School senior and officer of the club, sees great value in visiting the seniors.
“I really think that when we go around the room not only do they want to know about my life, they wanna give us insight because they think we’re cute little high schoolers who have so much life to live.”
Both Mr. Craft and Mary agree that the connections young people can make with older people are very valuable. Mr. Craft says his favorite part about the club is seeing both the students and the residents smile, laugh, or tell a story, and realize how much they really have in common.
“Those people are gonna be gone. People that have been through stuff—especially older than you—those memories [will be] gone, they’re not recorded anywhere. [This club] can pass on stories to someone else.”
Mary says she loves hearing the different stories of the seniors’ childhoods and their lives and how different they are from people’s today.
“It’s really touching,” said Mary, “when someone makes a connection with someone older than them.”