How to Get Started with Bucket Filling - momgineer

How to Get Started with Bucket Filling

Bucket Filling in the Classroom

Do you use bucket filling in your classroom or home? If not, I'd love for you to give it a try. Read on for tips on getting started!

How to get started with bucket filling! Promote kindness, empathy, cooperation, and tolerance with this simple yet powerful concept. | Meredith Anderson - Momgineer
How to get started with bucket filling! Promote kindness, empathy, cooperation, and tolerance with this simple yet powerful concept. | Meredith Anderson - Momgineer

Why Use Bucket Filling?

This is a simple concept that almost any child will understand. It's a way to encourage empathy, kindness, classroom citizenship, and more. Start with a Bucket Filling board or area of your classroom. Each student will receive their own "bucket." You can use actual buckets from your local dollar store, or even envelopes.

Free Bucket Filling Labels

I have created free labels for you to use! They are editable and you can choose from either chalkboard or white backgrounds.
I may earn a small commission for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial, and/or link to any products or services from this website. Your purchase helps support my work in bringing you downloads of value and information about educational resources. The link below is an Amazon affiliate link. You can read my full disclosure here. These labels have been designed to easily print on card stock or Avery shipping labels (8164).

Read About Bucket Filling 

If you aren't that familiar with bucket filling, these are two wonderful books to read with your students:

Student-led classroom management?

In a way, this is a student-led classroom management tool. Your students can write notes to each other to fill their buckets, or write a note to slip in their own bucket when someone filled theirs. They will be accountable not only to each other, but to themselves.

What about bucket dippers?

Though this can be a touchy subject, if you are treating each other with respect, one of the best things kids can learn is how to speak with others even when they are feeling hurt. They can use "I" statements such as, "I felt (disappointed, frustrated)________ when  ________ (I was excluded, I am being yelled at)." By addressing bucket dippers directly, the situation can be more quickly resolved and hopefully everyone can move on without grudges. It is important to listen to each other and let them know that they are being heard. It also gives the bucket dipper a chance to make amends in some way or explain their actions, especially if they were being misinterpreted. By leaving out "you," the person being addressed won't immediately go on the defensive. It's a simple shift, but a very important one.

Your classroom will benefit from bucket filling

Not only is bucket filling a daily reminder of how to be kind, it will help with these other important skills:
  • thinking before speaking or acting. Another way to put this is developing tact. This is a soft skill that will serve your kids for life.
  • more deeply understanding bullying and its effects.
  • performing small acts of kindness. A little kindness goes a long way. There can be a serious ripple effect and it is an amazing thing to witness.
  • tolerance. In today's world, kids encounter so many others from various backgrounds, beliefs, and more. Why not help them learn tolerance? 
  • emotion regulation. Adults could benefit from this as well! How often do we quickly lose our tempers when we could instead take a few moments to compose our thoughts and treat people with more respect?

What about mindfulness?

Mindfulness goes hand in hand with bucket filling. I have written a whole post about that, too! I'd love for you to check it out.

Bucket Filling Activities

If you already know you want to use the concept of bucket filling in your classroom management toolbox, I have put together a variety of activities that can be found here:

momgineer Meredith Anderson

STEM education is my passion!

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