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Tucson school starts new program to encourage more kindness on campus

Posted at 5:00 AM, Aug 12, 2019
and last updated 2019-08-12 16:36:13-04

TUCSON, Ariz. - Students and teachers at Agua Caliente Elementary School in Tucson are employing a new program with the hope of creating more kindness on campus.

The program, which teachers call Bucket Fillers, came from the 'Have You Filled A Bucket Today' book.

“Someone had suggested filling the buckets," said Kathryn Tompkins, a teacher at Agua Caliente Elementary.

Before school started back up for the year teachers and staff talked about how they could better the school.

“We were looking for something last year to really help implement a more safe and orderly campus," said Tompkins.

Through the new program, teachers are also teaching students to be more respectful, responsible, and safe.

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So how exactly does it work? Every time a teacher or staff member sees a student display an act of kindness, respect, responsibility, or safety, they get what's called 'coyote cash'.

Coyote cash is a small piece of paper where students write their name and submit into a plastic bucket.

At the end of the month one name is picked out from each bucket in each classroom and the student who's name is picked gets a prize.

Students at the elementary school said they were beyond excited about the program when they first heard about it, adding they've noticed a change among students.

"It was really cool because kids are starting to get really nice to other students, no negativity or bullying around the school now," said Delaney Mikkelson, a sixth grade student at Agua Caliente.

One student KGUN9 spoke to said he had already earned his first 'coyote cash' and was excited to continue helping students around campus.

I included people in playing games and I helped out around the classroom," said Deacon Pancost, a student at Agua Caliente Elementary.

Teachers and staff said they hope students continue doing acts of kindness, respect, responsibility and safety without expecting any reward.