Video & Film

A Buddy Bench makes a Big Difference

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At the 2014 TEDx Talk in Cairns, Australia, 9 year-old Charlie Cooper delivered a talk about his own experience overcoming bullying. In the talk, he describes the idea of having a buddy bench in schools, where lonely, shy, or bullied children can sit, indicating to their classmates that they would like some company, perhaps to join in a game or go for a walk. The buddy bench acts as an ice breaker and friendship tool for students who may struggle with making friends on their own.

Teachers can use this 5-minute video clip in discussions of kindness and inclusion, or to generate ideas for how to make school environments more welcoming. At a broader level, Charlie’s story can inspire discussions of perseverance, delivering the message that anyone can make a difference, at any age.