KINGSBRIDGE (WABC) --
Some New York City Catholic schools will be closed on Friday in honor of the pope's visit.
But Wednesday, many students in their classrooms were watching the pope in Washington.
There was an impromptu pep rally at Saint John's School in the Bronx, were students are way beyond excited that in less than 24 hours Pope Francis will be in their city.
"Just to have that leader and role model where I am is amazing," said Amanda Chrisphonte, a student.
All 210 students watched, as the pope received a warm welcome at the White House.
It's as if they were there celebrating, participating, closely following the ceremony. It's something these little ones have never seen before.
"He was all cheerful, I thought they would be talking about something so serious, but he was so happy," Chrisphonte said.
Amanda, Casey and Justin admire the pope and are practicing what he preaches.
"We could learn from Pope Francis because he's all about helping out the poor and we could all do that in our own way," said Casey Flaherty, a student.
The kids started learning about Pope Francis on the first day of school.
Principal Edward Higgins approach was to have fun with it.
You've heard of "Flat Stanley", well they had "Flat Francis".
The kids showed Eyewitness News all of the places the cardboard cutout pope has traveled.
After watching all of this, "One of the classes said, 'He's real' when he got out of the car. It's not some fictional character out of star wars or something, he's real and they saw it for the first time," Higgens said.
They're aren't going to any official events, but the kids are paying tribute to the Holy Father by hanging ribbons outside of their school and on each is a prayer for the pope.
"I think it goes beyond being Catholic, even the non-Catholic students that we have here, have a special affinity for the pope because of his message of love and that's our motto here at St. John's, to love one another," Higgins said.