I recently read Everybody Needs A Rock by Bryd Baylor (he has many books that are great read- alouds). This is a story in which a girl tells the reader the ten rules for finding a rock. “Not just any rock, Baylor is careful to note, but ‘a special rock that you find yourself and keep as long as you can–maybe forever.’
I did this for a writing spark and had my kids write their own rules. Some of the ideas I gave them were write ten rules for choosing a friend, parents, teachers, pet, a house, or a vacation spot. The kids loved writing their ten rules and especially they loved fantasizing about their ten rules for finding a teacher that doesn’t give homework and lets them sleep and play games all day and a parent that lets them go to concerts alone and sleep over with their friends on school nights! 🙂
To expand on this book, you could have the students bring in a special rock and write about how they chose it, you could supply the rocks and they could personify it in their writing, or you could do a esteem boosting activity where you bring in paint and have them paint the letter U on the rock. Eventually someone will figure out that it means U Rock! You can tell the students to keep the rock someone special and always remember they rock when they need a boost.