DENVILLE, NJ – Leadership development is an important component of the social and emotional learning (SEL) curriculum at Denville’s Riverview Elementary School and is integral in shaping ROCKET leaders who demonstrate Respect, Optimism, Compassion, Kindness and Empathy and are Team players. Eight Riverview students made special presentations during the Board of Education’s (BOE) meeting on Mon, Oct 28, to share how they show Riverview ROCKET leadership in various individual-, classroom-, grade- and school-level activities.

According to Riverview Principal Christina Theodoropoulos, the school began to focus on leadership at a deeper, more meaningful level a couple of years ago. 

“We want our students to exhibit leadership and accountability for their learning and behavior,” Theodoropoulos stated.

Sign Up for Denville Newsletter
Our newsletter delivers the local news that you can trust.

“Students are taught leadership skills through mastery enrichment classes, during morning meetings, through literature such as the book 7 Habits of Happy Kids, as well as throughout their daily school experiences. The Riverview students are offered opportunities to practice and exhibit leadership through a variety of experiences such as peer mentors, kindergarten helpers, student-led activities, personal goal setting, being a part of our student SEL team, K-Kids, as well as being classroom and school-wide helpers.” 

Speaking first at the BOE meeting, Sebastian Parillo and Julianna DeCongelio shared how they exhibited self-leadership by setting personal learning goals through their successful use of Freckle MathTM. Freckle MathTM is an online software program that allows students to establish the number of problems they want to practice and set the skill level at which they wish to work.

Isabella Iannitelli and Isabella Ollo planned and ran a student-led assembly that centered on a ROCKET attribute. The “Bellas” helped to produce a school news broadcast that focused on respect.

Wendy Graziani and Lia DeMarco explained how Workout Wednesday allows each grade level to start the day with exercise and engage in healthy breathing techniques. Workout Wednesday gives students a peaceful start to their day and promotes wellness and self-confidence. 

Emma Kasper and Ava Miner talked about their Peaceful Dismissal broadcast. As the school recesses for the day, Peaceful Dismissals permit students to make shout-outs, lead and partake in reflective exercises, and conclude the day with positivity.

“A focus on leadership ties in with our character development and social emotional learning, and it teaches students that being a leader involves listening to others, compassion, respect and collaboration. It helps students develop important ‘life ready’ skills,” noted Theodoropoulos.

“We are so proud of the leadership and accountability our students continue to demonstrate day in and day out at Riverview School.”


Sign up for our FREE daily eNews.

Like us on Facebook @DenvilleTAP and follow us on Twitter @DenvilleTAP.

Download the TAPinto App for FREE in the Google Play Store and the Apple Store today. Search for “tapinto” or “”

Got a news tip? Email us at


Market Your Business through TAPinto Denville!
TAPinto Denville will help you build your brand, improve your online presence and reach thousands of people in Denville and beyond. Packages include social media promotion, native content, clickable banner ads and D.I.Y. publication of events, press releases and more. Become a TAPinto Denville advertiser! Call (908) 279-0303, x224, or click here.