GARDEN CITY, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — Students from two Long Island elementary schools got on Santa’s ‘nice’ list Tuesday, with a charitable donation filled with holiday spirit.

Children from Stewart and Stratford Elementary School paid a visit to Roosevelt Field Mall, in Garden City to unload bags of donated gifts as part of a Toys for Tots donation drive.

Students began collecting toys last month to give to families struggling to put gifts under the tree, WLNY TV 10/55’s Long Island Bureau Chief Richard Rose reported.

“I feel kind of bad for them, so I like giving to them because it makes me feel good too,” Molly Martin, a student at Stratford Elementary, said.

One teacher said these youngsters often chose to give away toys they wanted themselves.

“I think we have to stop and reflect and say ‘you know what, I have so much, let me give a little something to someone who’s maybe a little less fortunate than me,'” Stratford Elementary School teacher Pat Lupo said.

The U.S. Marines helped organize the Toys for Tots drive.

“We’ll give the toys to Catholic charities, and we’ll give the toys to the Salvation Army,” Major Chuck Kilbride, of Toys for Tots, said.

Santa also paid visit to the students, who greeted him with cheers of excitement. He said he considers the generous kids his newest elves and that their donations will definitely help him complete his rounds this year.

“They’re showing me how good they are, and because of that, I’ll have Mrs. Claus work a little harder to make a little more presents,” Santa said.

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