Addressing the tumult of school bus rides

In the last few weeks, I’ve received not one, but two, requests from principals asking Playworks to consider how we might adapt our approach to address the tumult of school buses. It seems that while the wheels on the bus are turning, children are no longer using that time for friendly conversation and games.

The first request came during a school visit in St. Paul, MN, where I was observing our program as adapted for snow and freezing temperatures. The second came from a principal in Boston writing to thank us for our work in helping to reduce bullying at his school. In his letter, he asked if we’d ever considered our program for school buses. Given that Playworks was seeded by a principal’s good idea, I thought I’d address the requests promptly.

Teaching kids how to get along on the playground is our specialty; why wouldn’t it work on a school bus? This seems like an interesting and relevant potential role for our junior coaches, and one we’re interested in exploring. Junior coaches could provide a model for great behavior, teach  games and solve conflicts when others are in need of support. Our catch-all conflict resolution tool, rock-paper-scissors can be played easily in any location.

In the past, a school bus may have been buzzing with conversation, hand games, call-and-response songs, clapping games and more. So, while we take a further look on how our junior coaches could be called in to service to help out on the buses, I suggest Five Games for the School Bus as a place to start.

How does your child handle the tumult of school buses?

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