Friday, 10 February 2017

'Have You Filled a Bucket Today?' - Storybook & Craft

If you're looking for a book to share with kids that encourages kindness, compassion, & gratitude then this is for you. Have You Filled a Bucket Today? by Carol McCloud is a beautiful storybook with a wonderful concept that will help children (& adults) understand that simple actions can change the world for the better.


I first came across this book a couple of years ago & it's just one of those children's books that stays with you. The story is so simple but also so clever, & the colourful illustrations help younger children understand the concept of the 'bucket'. In the book Carol McCloud beautifully describes how each of us have an invisible bucket that we carry around with us all the time. When we fill our bucket we feel happy, when it's empty we feel sad. But in order to fill our bucket we have to help others fill theirs.

But how can we do this? The book is packed with great ideas that are simple enough for any age to try; from saying thank you, smiling at someone, or offering to help someone at home or school. Each suggestion demonstrates compassion, friendship, respect, & gratitude & when these are offered to someone else you're not only filling their bucket, but you're filling yours too!


Cleverly the author uses the 'bucket' concept to demonstrate the effects of bullying too; that when you say or do mean things you're emptying someone else's bucket, & when you do this your bucket is empty too. "You cant fill your own bucket by dipping into someone else's." 

The book continues with more positive suggestions for children, & concludes by looking at the bigger picture, that if we all show appreciation & kindness & fill other buckets then we make our home, school, & neighbourhood a better place to be! It's a great way of showing children how their individual simple actions can make a big impact.



After reading the book we thought we'd create a visible bucket to encourage us to think about how we could be bucket fillers every day. 




To make them we used:
Small paper cup
A pipe cleaner
Coloured beads
Sharp pencil 
Pens 
Coloured paper 

We started by making 2 holes on opposite sides of the paper cup by carefully pushing the tip of the pencil through. Then to create the handle we threaded a few beads onto a pipe cleaner, making sure we left plenty of the pipe cleaner free to thread through the cup & twist to secure on either side.
Using pens we decorated our bucket & added a face just like the buckets illustrated in the book.


We wanted to remember all the great 'bucket filler' suggestions from the book so we cut out some heart shaped memos from coloured paper, & together we wrote down all the ideas along with some of our own. This was a lovely activity to share, & wonderful to hear the variety of ways we could each make a difference. When we'd finished we folded our hearts & added them to our little bucket.



We plan to pick a heart from the bucket each day to remind us to be bucket fillers! As the paper hearts are small they're an ideal size to slip into your pocket so you can carry them around with you during the day & perhaps be inspired to do more than one act of kindness to help someone else. 


So why not make someones day & say 
"I'm going to do something to fill someone's bucket today!"

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