Waverly Park fifth graders in Amy Garfinkel’s class found a way to brighten the day of seniors living at the Atria Tanglewood, an assisted living facility in Lynbrook. With schools being closed and with seniors at assisted living facilities being confined to their rooms due to the coronavirus, Mrs. Garfinkel thought of a special writing assignment fit for the times. She asked her students to create uplifting greeting cards filled with positive and kind messages for residents of the Atria where her uncle is currently staying.
Once completed, the fifth graders were asked to place their cards in a plastic baggy and leave it by their front door for Garfinkel to pick up. She picked up about 20 cards from their houses and was even able to catch a few students smiling through the windows and front doors.
“I don’t know who was more excited about the activity, my students or me,” said Mrs. Garfinkel. “My uncle was moved to the Atria only two days before it went into quarantine. He is 95 years old, and to say the least, this was a huge adjustment in general for him, let alone not being able to see his family…I wanted to make this difficult time for him, as well as for all the residents, a tiny bit happier by getting special ‘mail’ that was made with love and affection by local students of Lynbrook.”
After collecting the cards, Mrs. Garfinkel stopped by the Atria and delivered them to the executive director who was extremely grateful. A few weeks later, Garfinkel received a general newsletter with typical updates from the Atria and was excited to see a shout out to her class for their cards. The Atria thanked the fifth graders for thinking of the residents and described the impact that the cards made.