The Lower School buddy relays is an annual spring tradition that celebrates school community, outdoor play and collaboration. Photo by David Kenas.
Sleep, regular exercise, and nutrition are the building blocks of physical health. Character strengths – such as grit, curiosity, social intelligence, zest – contribute to a positive outlook and balanced life.
Since Riverdale’s founding in 1907, the school has recognized that students learn best in an environment where nature and human relationships support the development of healthy bodies and minds. With its attention to how students learn as well as how they develop, Riverdale helps students make positive choices as they learn to explore their identities, manage stress, and find outlets for their energy, individuality, and personal voice.
At the Lower School, Riverdale offers a spacious natural setting for instruction, sports, and imaginative play. Lunch is nutritious, and students have time built into their day for physical activity, play, and reflection. Riverdale’s character strengths provide a framework for learning as students learn how to be focused, resilient, respectful of others, and open to instruction and feedback. Mindfulness techniques help students and faculty refresh and refocus their energy. Physical education introduces students to a variety of activities that develop gross motor skills, cardiovascular endurance, hand-eye coordination, flexibility, muscular strength, and good character. Co-curricular activities support a welcoming and inclusive culture for children and families.
At the Middle and Upper School campus, playing fields and open spaces provide students with room to play pick-up basketball or soccer during their free periods, or read quietly on a park bench under a leafy tree. Middle and Upper School students can participate in a wide variety of individual and team sports. Physical education classes offer many options including swimming, yoga, and fitness training. A health curriculum addresses physiology, sexuality, stress, and substance abuse. The deans, the counseling office, and the Learning Research Team provide safe places for students to get advice and support. The school actively seeks information from students about academic and social pressure so that these concerns can be addressed through individual conversations as well as events for the grade and the entire division. The Community Engagement Team works to create a culture of belonging, where students can feel accepted for who they are.
To learn more about how Riverdale promotes healthy bodies and healthy minds, go to the following videos and stories:
- Falcons Row Fast
- Learning and Swimming With Purpose
- A Running Mindset
- Smarter Soccer
- Riverdale Upper School Organizes Day of Wellness
- Feeling Safe