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Reading Buddies at Thurston Woods Elementary

We invite you and your child to participate in the third year of our partnership with Thurston Woods Elementary, a Milwaukee Public School.  Over the years and over this past summer, we worked with administration at Thurston Woods to pick activities and dates that fit into their very busy school year. Our events include partnering with upper elementary students at the school for friendship, art making, and mentoring. Please see our past experiences to get a feel for this program that is near and dear to our hearts: Fox6NOW "Do Something Important", Cooking With Our Mentors, Year 2 Begins! This year we will meet October 19th, November 16th, March 15th and April 26th. We are very grateful to receive funding for our Reading Buddies Program from the Elmer and Grace Schroeder Foundation, Christ Church Episcopal in Whitefish Bay, and our Toddlers and Kids on a Mission families.

PURPOSE:The Reading Buddies project is meant to grow the students’ confidence in reading and in their ability to lead, the program will allow your child to partner with an older child who is supportive and a great example of an “expert” reader (as they say in elementary school).  Artwork will be created to decorate the cafeteria at a senior center. It’s also fun, creative, and playful. *With this special event, children will also learn that they are capable of working to fill a need with our Milwaukee neighbors who are homeless.*

IMPACT: Your work at Reading Buddies will create a cheerful artwork to brighten an elderly Milwaukee resident’s day. As a token of gratitude, Toddlers and Kids on a Mission offers a book to each Thurston Woods reading buddy. By partnering with a school community and donating artwork, you and your child will help grow relationships across multiple neighborhoods. *Our Milwaukee neighbors who are homeless will receive care kits that children will make at this special event.*

ACTIVITIES: We will meet with our Reading Buddies in the Thurston Woods Campus Library to share a read-aloud. The “big” buddies (TWC students) will read self-chosen books to the “little” buddies (Toddlers and Kids on a Mission kids). The buddies will create an art project to donate to a local senior agency. The students will share a snack and socialize at the end of our time together. **FOR NOVEMBER ONLY** We are grateful and pleased to announce that we have been awarded a grant from GenerationOn (a division of Points of Light Foundation) and funded by Disney Co. While the funds will be used for our St. Vincent de Paul meal the following Saturday, we will be packing care bags for diners during Reading Buddies on this day to supplement our activity that evening.

WHEN and WHERE: Thursday, November 16th 9:15-10:30 am Thurston Woods Campus, 5966 N. 35th Street, Milwaukee, WI 53209 Please sign in at the front office. A school or Toddlers and Kids on a Mission representative will escort you to the library. We will gather in the library between 9:15-9:30, and TWC students will join us to start promptly at 9:30.


PROJECT MANAGERS: Lynn and Nicole are the leads for this event. Should you need anything, please contact Lynn (

CANCELLATIONS: Please contact Lynn ( ASAP in the event of a cancellation so we can add waitlisted families to the event. There are 15 TWC students attending and we want to ensure that each student has a reading buddy.

PARTICIPANT CAP: 15 children  

AGE: Ideal for ages 2-8 (younger children are always welcome to join)

COST: No cost to families. Please consider bringing a 2nd-5th grade reading level book to donate to the students.

MATERIALS: None required. Optional book donation.

QUESTIONS:  Please contact Lynn ( or Nicole ( with any questions. Also, please contact Lynn if your child has any food allergies or restrictions. We will send you an email to confirm registration and touch base before the event. 

MORE INFORMATION: Benefits of a Reading Buddy Program

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