With Valentine’s Day fast approaching, students at Phillips Avenue and Roanoke Avenue Elementary Schools in Riverhead have taken the holiday’s message of love to heart by participating in “The Great Kindness Challenge,” a nationwide program in which schools are encouraged to perform as many acts of kindness as possible in one week.
The challenge, which began last month, was coordinated by each school’s Peacemakers group, a student-initiated anti-bullying movement, said Sandy Kolbo, spokeswoman for Riverhead School District.
As part of the challenge, students created a banner with the words “Kindness Matters” and encouraged their classmates to write a kind note for someone in their school, Ms. Kolbo said.
In addition, students were asked to make friendly gestures like hugging a friend, bringing a flower to a staff member and offering to help the school’s custodian, Ms. Kolbo said. The fourth grade chorus at Roanoke Elementary School recorded a special song about being kind.
“It is hoped that the Challenge will help create a culture of kindness in school and increase tolerance, unit and respect for all,” Ms. Kolbo said.