We started by reading the story Have You Filled a Bucket Today: A Guide to Daily Happiness for Kids
by Carol McCloud. It introduces the concept that everyone has an invisible bucket, and when we say nice things we fill the bucket, but when we say mean or hurtful things we dip from the bucket. My students love the bright, colorful pictures and they can really relate to this concept. They know how it makes them feel when people say mean things to them vs. when people say nice things to them and they definitely want to hear the nice things more than the hurtful ones!
I appologize for the glare, but this is my bucket filler board! It is at the front of my classroom and I have a pocket for each of my students and then a bucket (bottom left) where the blank bucket filler notes are kept.
I got the plastic organizer thingy at the Target Dollar Spot a while back, and I also got the pink dotted bucket from there! I don’t think they have the organizers anymore, but I saw some at Michaels the other day with 30+ slots if you are looking for something similar!
After reading the book we talk about different things we can say to other people when we notice them doing something special or kind. We talk about being specific! I tell them I don’t want to see any notes saying “you are nice” or similar statements. They should refer to something specific that the student said or did that they noticed and thought deserved a special note.
Throughout the day when students are finished with their tasks, they may write a note to another student and put it in their bucket. By Friday all the buckets are filled with several positive notes!