Bucket Filling STEM Activities - Are you a Bucket Filler Classroom?

Do you have a bucket filler classroom? I just love this method of spreading kindness and practicing empathy. It is simple enough for kids to understand and practice, and can make a big difference in classroom management as a positive instead of punitive tool.

You can get started with Bucket Filling by visiting this post, but I can’t wait to share some ideas of hands-on STEM activities you can do with your students to really make bucket filling come alive!

Using Buckets to Explore Capacity

How much can a bucket hold? If you are learning about capacity, you can have students estimate how much water various buckets will hold. Whether you use metric (mL, liters) or English (ounce, cup, pint, quart, gallon), you can practice estimating capacity with students. Gather a variety of plastic buckets, from small decorative ones to large beach pails from the dollar store. Have measuring cups nearby.

Ask: How much water do you think the bucket will hold? All your students to write down their guesses and then measure together! Once you have shown them how to do this, you can break into smaller groups and allow them to measure. You may want to do this outside.

Explore Buckets with Experiments: Try Newton’s Bucket Experiment and more!

This is a fairly simple experiment you can try with a bucket an water or you can play with a virtual demo here.

You can have fun outside by exploring how inertia keeps water in a bucket if you spin it around (thanks, Flipping Physics)!

Explore buoyancy by playing with a bucket in water! Will it float or sink? How could you make it sink? What happens if you put a bucket in the water upside down (open end down)?

Buckets and Simple Machines

How can you move a bucket using different simple machines? Try moving a bucket with:

  • a wheel and axle
  • an inclined plane
  • a pulley
  • a lever

More Bucket Filling STEM

There are so many fun things you can do to tie STEM into your classroom kindness efforts! The above activity is a sample from this Bucket Filling STEM resource, that includes a science exploration, a computer science activity and several other STEM activities that go along with bucket filling.

Students will design and create their own bucket to start and then use their bucket as they explore other activities as well! You can find the resource here:

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Originally posted at STEM Activities for Kids