Avon East Elementary teaches kids how to have an impact through kindness

Students at Avon East Elementary in Lorain County are receiving lessons on kindness and compassion as a part of their education.

Avon -- School is about more than just math, science, and language arts at Avon East Elementary in Lorain County. Students are also learning how to become better human beings.

It's all a part of their new mindfulness and kindness program called Soarstice.

“We've built character traits each month that showcase how we want our students to become good citizens,” says building principal Krista Kotecki.

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Parents even volunteer as Happiness coaches teaching attributes like being safe, owning your behavior, performing academically, and being respectful. Students then practice acts of kindness in the community like collecting toys for the Avon Police Department.

“Police officers are going to give them to the people and make sure they are very safe,” says 6-year-old Kaia Leppla.

Avon Police sent two officers with two police cruisers to collect the donations in late February.

“It’s always a pleasure to see the children happy and them to be looking forward to getting involved in the community,” says Avon officer Ray Saladonis. “Donating these teddy bears and stuffed animals is a great tool that we can use to help our community relations.”

Officers will keep the toys in their cruisers to give to children when responding to calls.

“When you give kindness out to other people, your heart can grow as big as you can ever dream of,” says Leppla.

Kotecki says a program like Soarstice helps students to understand that they can make an impact simply by noticing what’s going on in the world around them.

Second grader Juliet Williams says Soarstice has inspired her to dream of one day sitting in the Oval Office.

“I want to be the president and make things right in the country.”