2010-03-04 / Top Stories

P.S. 244 Students Share Love Of Books—And Others

This kindergarten class helped brighten holidays for hospital-bound Brookdale patients in the hospital’s children’s ward with books and personalized greeting card. This kindergarten class helped brighten holidays for hospital-bound Brookdale patients in the hospital’s children’s ward with books and personalized greeting card. A very special project was undertaken at Public School 244 in East Flatbush before the December holiday break. The school, where students learn early on the importance of reading, recently decided to spread the good word with some holiday cheer.

Teacher Helen Mazariegos’ kindergarten class performed a random act of kindness when it learned that due to ailments and disorders, patients in the children’s ward at Brookdale Hospital could not go home for the holidays. Ms “M,” as the teacher is fondly known in the 5400 Tilden Avenue elementary school, contacted Lauren Maxwell, a certified Child Life Specialist who operates Brookdale’s playroom, to start the ball rolling.

Ms. “M” asked the parents of her class to donate one easy reading book for the hospitalized youngsters. In addition, the students created personalized greeting cards to help cheer up the sickly children. The kindergarteners collected 30 books, which were packaged and delivered with the cards to the hospital last month.

(At right) Package of books and cards on display before delivery to young hospital patients. (At right) Package of books and cards on display before delivery to young hospital patients. Ms. “M” said she the project only taught her students the importance of caring for others, but instilled in them “an inclination to make a difference in someone’s life.”

“Lessons that can only be learned through example,” she added.

In response to the generosity of the P.S. 244 teacher and students, Maxwell responded with a letter to Marzariegos thanking her and the students and to inform them how much their kindness impacted the lives of the children at Brookdale.

It read in part: “Oftentimes the children are isolated in their rooms with nothing to do ad when I give them a book or coloring activity, it truly brightens their day…A book is something that belongs to the child and, I believe, brings each one great satisfaction.

“The time and care you and your class put into collecting the books and creating the thoughtful cards is truly appreciated.”

Mazariegos said, “These fiveyear old kindergarten students are happy that they put a smile on the faces of children who really needed to be uplifted. They truly made a difference in the lives of those ill children.

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