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Walnut valley Unified School District

ALLmeansALL! Walnut Valley USD is proud to be a National Schools to Watch District with numerous National Blue Ribbon, California Gold Ribbon, and California Distinguished School awards. Our motto is KIDS FIRST... Every Student, Every Day!  

Every Moment Matters

September 20, 2017

By Kelli Gile, WVUSD Office of Community Resources

WALNUT, CA—Everyone has an invisible bucket. When it’s full, we feel great. And when it’s empty, we feel awful.

After Vejar Elementary 2nd graders read the bestselling book, How Full is Your Bucket? For Kids, students learned how their interactions can help keep each other’s metaphorical bucket filled during the school day.

The children began writing simple, uplifting messages to each other like, “You are good at math,” “Thank you for being a good friend,” and “You have a nice smile.”

They placed the notes in tiny buckets created from paper cups and pipe cleaners as a visual reminder.

Students began looking out for their schoolmates in class and on the playground.

“I’m trying to teach them to pay attention to people that have empty buckets so they can fill them,” said teacher Giselle Cordova.

“They are very eager to make each other feel good, because it makes them feel good too!”

A few days later, youngsters took the little buckets home to share with families and begin imagining everyone’s invisible bucket, Cordova said.

“I saved all my notes in my pencil case because they make me feel special,” shared 2nd grader Sophia Sanchez.

Two of her favorite messages read, “I love you” and “Thanks for playing with me.”

On September 20, students penned a new batch of kindness drops to fill a classroom bucket.

“I like doing it because we make people happy,” said Joey Hwu, age 7, who wished a classmate good luck in school.

“And it makes me feel happy too!”

Olivia Parungao wrote, “I’m happy to see you in my class,” before plucking the note into the green and yellow container.

Cordova even integrated the bucket theme into a recent Language arts lesson, having students practice complimenting each other using sentence frames.

“It's awkward at times, but they enjoy giving and receiving compliments,” she said.

“We talk about how our classroom, school, and even world would be a better place if everyone's buckets were full.”

Now, when the class gathers during Monday Meet-Ups, each student is asked to share something good that happened over the weekend.

“We start our week with a positive thought and practice filling our own buckets!” said Cordova.


Drops of Love! Vejar Elementary 2nd graders write kindness notes for classmates. 

Vejar 2nd graders Sebastian Lawrence and Avery Bromberg get ready to drop kindness notes for classmates in bucket on Sept. 20.