New CMU program bridging generation gaps

(Photo courtesy of CMU)

(Photo courtesy of CMU)

Three generations are mixing at Central Michigan University, thanks to a new program implemented this fall.

Bridges Together is a learning development program where preschoolers get to hangout with seniors 60 or older and CMU students.

The seniors read and do activities with the preschools.

Most of the activities, organizers say, center around the theme of a book they read together.

The college students oversee the session and make sure things run smoothly.

Linda Traum is an Early Childhood Development Professor at Central Michigan University. She said all of the generations are clicking, and learning a lot from each other.

“There has been research that shows that when older adults interact with younger children, that it’s actually very good for them, it’s good for their health, good for their emotional well being so that certainly helps them in terms of keeping active. We’ve had adults who say you know you feel younger when you’re with younger children.”

Traum said Bridges Together is an important tool in a culture that is largely segmented.

“We really now need to find ways of kind of regrouping back generations so that they can learn from each other, experience the wisdom of each other and be able to have those — develop those– really warm connections.”

Seniors and college students can sign up to volunteer by contacting Traum at 989-774-3957.