Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Have You Filled a Bucket Today?

For a beautiful character-strengthening message inside a great story, try this book for the 4-8 year old crowd: "Have You Filled a Bucket Today?" The premise of the book is that we all have an invisible bucket and when we do kind things for others (helping others, saying something nice, including people, giving a hug) we fill their buckets and we fill ours at the same time. When we are unkind to people (calling them names, being a bully, hitting) we dip into their bucket and our own. The fuller your bucket is, the happier you are, so the idea is to keep your bucket full through kind deeds as much as possible.

The book has one seven awards and is a best seller. Many school districts in Michigan, where the author, Carol McCloud lives, have adopted not only the book, but Bucket Filling programs in their schools, allowing students to nominate and recognize kindness in others to promote those qualities in their student body.

The book really resonates with children. It gives many colorful examples of how to fill and dip into a bucket that kids can relate to. The visual of the bucket helps them to understand how this works and to sort out their own feelings. It is a great way of promoting not only kindness but compassion as well. This is one of my kids' favorite books and each time they do a good deed they comment on how many buckets that deed filled. For example, for our theme of giving this month we have fed the homeless several times and each time we do it, they comment on how we not only fed people today but filled their buckets and ours too. They love that!

I got to know the publisher of this book, Nelson Publishing and Marketing when I was trying to publish my own children's story. Although I decided not to publish it for various reasons, I became impressed with Marian Nelson's vision. Unlike most publishers, she will publish books by first time authors, but she will only publish books that somehow further such attributes as peace, tolerance, and understanding. Her mission is to create a greater understanding of humanity through the written word. I've read many of her books and that is exactly what her books do. I really respect that.

As I got to know Marian better she asked if I would be interested in selling her books in Colorado. I readily agreed even though I know it is not going to make me a wealthy woman, it is in alignment with promoting the greater good in people. If you are interested in seeing the other book titles that they offer, or in possibly publishing a book of your own, go to If you want to buy the books you can do so through their website, or if you are local I am happy to get you a copy of "Have You Filled a Bucket Today?"


  1. What a great subtitle! It's wonderful to see happiness touted as something valuable for kids. It's occurrred to me lately that growing up, there was always an unspoken assumption that i should be happy -- but very little said about how that happened except, perhaps, to point me towards material acquisition. I'm going to forward this to our wonderful friend who is the principal of an arts-based elementary charter school - i think it's just the kind of thing she'd appreciate. Tracy, should she contact you directly since (I assume)she'll be buying in bulk?

  2. Hi Mary-Helen, thanks for your help with this! Contacting me directly would be great. I think you have my email. :-)

  3. It is great to see that this is being taught to children; I am currently reading "How Full is Your Bucket" (Tom Rath) for adults in my book club at my job and this idea can really turn around a work place; to see that someone has adapted this to teach children is really great! Thanks for letting us know this is in existence.

  4. Wow, I didn't know there was an adult version! Thanks for sharing, Andrea.

  5. Then primary Pataskala of any child is there house and his mother and then rest of other things. The Education means in it is an art and science whose learn any act or experience that has a formative effect on the mind, character or physical ability of an individual. The education in general sense is the process by which society deliberately transmits its accumulated knowledge, skills and values from one generation to another.

  6. I love the idea of this book. I might even sneak in reading it to my teens!