Lesson Plan

Have you thanked your school bus driver lately?

The yellow school bus gets millions of kids to and from school safely and reliably each day. It's time to say thank you to the unsung heroes who keep our kids safe and out of harm's way.

Objective: On Valentine's Day, February 14, the American School Bus Council, a unified voice of the school transportation industry including public and private transportation providers, school bus manufacturers and state officials responsible for pupil transportation would like the nation's schoolchildren to say "thank you" to the 480,000 bus drivers that keep them safe each day by presenting them with a valentine.

Outline of Activity: The American School Bus Council is asking teachers and students to participate in the activity by having students customize and print or e-mail a Love The Bus valentine to their bus driver.

Students can choose from a wide variety of valentine styles, colors and graphics. They can customize their valentine with their name and their bus driver's name. The only requirement is that students complete the phrase, "I love the yellow school bus because..."

Suggested Activity Duration: 40 minutes

Other Key Learnings: During this activity, the American School Bus Council recommends that teachers review with students important school bus facts and safety tips including:

School Bus Facts to Learn and Share:

  • School buses are the safest form of transportation for getting children to and from school.
  • Some 480,000 school buses carry 26 million children more than half of America's school children each day, rarely with any serious accident.
  • Continually updated safety features on school buses ensure children are protected both on and off the bus.
  • School bus drivers are highly trained, licensed and screened professionals who constantly have child safety in mind.
  • The school bus industry operates by a set of guidelines addressing transportation safety; emergency preparedness; bus driver qualifications, hiring and training; and health and environmental safety. They meet, and in some cases exceed, federal and state laws.

School Bus Safety Tips for Students:

  • Be alert to traffic. Check both ways for cars before stepping off the bus.
  • Make eye contact with the bus driver, and wait for the bus driver's signal before crossing the street.
  • Walk in front of the bus; never walk behind the bus to cross the street.
  • While waiting for the bus, stay in a safe place away from the street.
  • Before leaving the sidewalk, look for the flashing red lights.
  • Never go near or under the bus to retrieve something you've dropped.

Offline Activity: If a computer lab is not available, "thank you" letters, drawings or stories about a child's bus driver can be written and presented to bus drivers on Valentine's Day.

Reward: This activity can be rewarded with valentine treats or a party, although many students will find tremendous satisfaction in doing something nice for their bus driver.