We started off our new year by reading The Energy Bus for Kids by Jon Gordon. What an excellent way to talk to kids about staying positive and overcoming challenges.
This book presents 5 different rules to help us in our daily lives.
Rule #1: Create a positive vision.
When we take time to close our eyes and picture how we want our day to go, then we are creating a positive vision. I love how one of my students called it "visioning". They turned it into a verb. Start visioning before your day starts. Think about how you will interact with others, how you will work toward your goals. I have used a term with my students before called "mental imaging". This is what athletes do before they perform. They picture themselves making the free throw in basketball or executing a perfect front handspring in gymnastics.
What can we vision? Here are some ideas:
Greeting others with a smile.
Helping others when they are struggling.
Doing a chore for someone in your family.
Giving someone a special treat.
Rule #2: Fuel your ride with positive energy.
Positive energy includes the positive thoughts and emotions we think and those we share with others. How do we fuel up with positive energy? Try some of these:
Choose to be positive.
Use your manners.
The book suggests thinking this:
"I am ready for a great day.
I believe in myself.
I trust that I will accomplish my goals and dreams."
I love this! What a great mantra to start your day with!
Rule #3: No Bullies Allowed!
I love this rule because it isn't really about bullying...to me, it's about how we handle people who may not treat us very good sometimes. It's our response. WE can REACT or RESPOND! WE get to choose if we will allow someone to drain our positive energy. And I don't know about you.....but I don't like to give someone else that power. I'm not saying this is always easy. There are some negative people out there who make it their mission to ruin someone else's day. That makes me sad for them. I use the Empowerment Tools that author Trudy Ludwig taught our students years ago when she visited our school and they still work! Check them out here on my YouTube channel with Mr. Judge our 7-12 counselor.
Rule #4: Love your passengers.
This one pretty much boils down to being kind. The thing I love about kindness is the ripple effect that it has. I love teaching kids about kindness because they can list ways to be kind ALL. DAY. LONG! They love it! When I talked to the kids about this I asked them about how to LOVE your passengers. They thought LOVE meant the mushy kind of love. So we had to clarify that! We talked about different kinds of love such as loving your family compared to loving pepperoni pizza. We also talked about how we show that love to others. I told them when my family cleans up after themselves it is their way of showing me they love me. My students' ideas included saying hi to someone, closing someone's locker door for them, helping someone out, doing something extra special for someone on their birthday.
Rule #5: Enjoy the ride.
When we practice the first 4 rules, the 5th rule is just automatic! The ride through life is so much more enjoyable when we are making a practice of being positive, which is what the Energy Bus is all about!
I had fun interviewing our transportation director, Amos, about what his take on the Energy Bus Rules was. Tune in here to watch the interview!
THANKS TO AMOS for spending some time with me and sharing with our students!
So....now it's your turn. Are you going to 'get on the bus'?