A visit to Akron Children’s Hospital to deliver homemade blankets capped a lesson in kindness by students at Lake Cable Elementary School in Jackson Local Schools.
The goal for 5th grade teacher Megan Taylor was to help her students explore various aspects of emotional health.
The lessons incorporated 2 books, The 5 Love Languages for Children by Gary Chapman and Ross Campbell and Have You Filled a Bucket? by Carol McCloud.
McCloud’s book encourages positive behavior by using the concept of an invisible bucket to show children how easy and rewarding it is to express kindness, appreciation and love by filling buckets.
“Every student was given a love language survey which was scored, sent home and had a parent letter explaining what it meant,” said Taylor. “We wanted to encourage discussion between parents and their children. Once they are aware of the various ways their children are able to give and receive love, they will be able to connect better emotionally.”
All of this led to their “Bucket Filling Day Celebration” on Feb. 23. Rob Snow, founder of Stand Up for Downs, presented at an assembly about kindness and perspective in the morning.
Afterwards, every student (K-5) spent the day rotating through the 5 love language stations. These included:
- Acts of service — made tie-knot blankets
- Gifts — made friendship bracelets
- Touch — children painted their hands/made hand-prints connected by a ribbon to send “hugs” to local nursing homes and Akron Children’s patients
- Quality time — students had the opportunity to participate in team building activities in the gym, paint, or play board games with our volunteers and teachers
- Words of affirmation — students made cards for the children in the hospital and senior citizens in local nursing homes or participated in self-esteem building activities
Bucket Filler Club members meet every 2 weeks and have been learning how to build morale and spread kindness in the school building.
“There are so many kids who are unable to find or make the necessary emotional connections they need when things get hard,” said Taylor. “We think that this is a good place to start. We want them to have a better understanding of themselves and others around them. Everyone should leave with their emotional ‘bucket’ completely filled that day. The best way to do this is to uplift and give ourselves to others.”