Have You Filled a Bucket Today?

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The children’s book Have You Filled a Bucket Today? was recently given to us by a friend who loves it and now that we have read it, I am passionate about spreading the word because I feel it is a book that needs to be in every child’s library.

The book deals with two incredibly important topics – positive self-esteem and kindness.

I was taught from a very young age the importance of kindness.  My mom always told me, “You don’t have to be friends with everybody, but you do have to be kind to everybody.” That lesson has served me well through the years, and it is a value I try very hard to teach my girls on a daily basis.

Now that I am a mom myself and around young children all the time, from what I have observed, I don’t think kindness is innate. I believe it is something that has to be taught, coached, modeled and reinforced.  The same goes with empathy, I think kids have to be taught how their words and actions affect others.

This book does exactly that through an easy to understand symbol.

The book is about buckets, and how everyone in the world carries around an invisible bucket filled with good thoughts and feelings about themselves.

When you show kindness and love, you help fill someone’s bucket.  The great thing about being a bucket filler is you also fill your own at the same time! Bucket fillers are happy because it feels good to make others feel special.

But on the flip side, when you are mean to someone, you dip into their bucket.  It talks about how sometimes bullies will try to dip into other people’s buckets to fill theirs, but that never works.  A bucket dipper empties their own bucket at the same time, because it never feels good to be unkind.

This book is the perfect conversation starter for kids about bullying. With October being National Bullying Prevention Month, this truly is a phenomenal book to open up on the dialogue.

When reading this book, my daughters will give me spontaneous examples of friends that dipped their bucket or someone else’s bucket during the day.

By talking about what happened, we are able to brainstorm ways they could have helped someone, or how they could have communicated how someone hurt their feelings by something they did.  It has started a gazillion priceless conversations and created a bunch of unexpected teachable moments.  The kind of recess stories that I might not have otherwise heard.

Every day when I kiss Emma good-bye at school, I remind her to “be a bucket filler today!” and she knows exactly what I mean.

I just LOVE this book because the world needs more bucket fillers, don’t you think?

Has anyone else read it?  Do you agree?



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  1. 1

    I forgot to add this book has great reminders for adults too!

  2. 2

    Thank you so much for sharing! I'm going to pick this up! What a simple message and a great tool for parents! XO

    • 3

      Love it!! Thanks for sharing Susanne 🙂 Stella is a little to young for this now but deff gonna order it for when she gets bigger!! Xoxo

    • 4

      Chelsea – They make a book for young kids too! I just bought it for my 3 year old!

  3. 5

    What a great book idea! I definitely want to pick this up because I am hearing more and more about the bad behaviors on the playground rather than the good ones. Thanks for sharing!

    • 6

      Leslie, it seriously has gotten my daughter to share so many stories I don't think she would have otherwise, and at recess there is no one out there to referee the issues many times. So I firmly believe we have to help teach our kids how to do this with kindness. This book is amazing. Thanks for the comment – you will love it.

  4. 7

    This book looks fantastic! I love the message and symbolism. I agree that kind actions need to be modeled and reinforced, and I'm looking forward to sharing this with my daughter.

  5. 9
    Jen says:

    Testing this comment!

  6. 10

    […] Have You Filled a Bucket Today? teaches kids how their actions affect others. […]

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