Arbor Day


Arbor Day

by Alan Haskvitz

National Teachers Hall of Fame

http://reacheverychild.com/blog/2014/develop-students-appreciation-of-nature-with-arbor-day

About Arbor Day: Arbor Day is America’s National Tree Holiday, founded by J. Sterling Morton in Nebraska in 1872 to commerate the important of trees to humanity. Imagine all the uses trees have and why, on this day, it is recommended that you plant a tree and educate others about their importance. In 1970 Arbor Day was proclained the last Friday in April.

Celebrating this day is a wonderful way to integrate lessons and meet Common Core objectives. You can combine science, math, literacy, and social studies in create meaningful lessons that can result in a life time appreciation of nature. The problem is where to find these lessons. I especially like the build your own greenhouse one (http://lessonplanspage.com/sciencessmars5buildgreenhouseworksheet-htm) that offers students to grow their own seeds. An unexpected lesson here is the one of delayed gratification and the uncertainty of nature. Having the students track the growth, but I like to have them write poem about what the plant feels and about what they feel.

Another good project is to have students research the many uses of wood and make a list that is kept in the room for the rest of the year so that students can add to it as they are awakened to a use. Having them put their name next to the new idea adds to the lesson.

One thing that I always do is read Shel Silverstein’s The Giving Tree to the students. It really gets their attention and helps them develop an appreciation for trees. Here is the slideshow http://www.slideshare.net/wicaksana/the-giving-tree-3293089

Next I show this video and tell them to compare the two stories, this one by Lynne called, The Great Kapok Tree. It makes for a great discussion and also can be used for a variety of activites.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H-j9RRSWS1U

You should check out when your state celebrates Arbor Day and also note the State tree. A good art lesson would have each student research and draw a tree for every state. http://www.apples4theteacher.com/holidays/arbor-day/when-is-arbor-day.html

Lessons by subject matter

An excellent selection and easy to use, but basic.

http://arborday.org/arborday/classroom.cfm

Here are some excellent lessons and videos

Mostly for K to 8

http://lessonplanspage.com/arborday-htm/

More lessons, crafts, and activities

http://www.theteachersguide.com/arbordaylessonplans.htm

A Pinterest site with lots of images of ideas

For younger students.

http://www.pinterest.com/familythemeday/tree-crafts-and-arbor-day-projects-for-kids/

A lesson site that has good science ideas among others

http://www.teach-nology.com/teachers/lesson_plans/science/biology/arborday/

Civics lessons

For older students

http://www.foresthistory.org/education/curriculum/Activity/activ4/activ4.html

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They are posted here

 

http://reacheverychild.com/blog/2014/develop-students-appreciation-of-nature-with-arbor-day

 

 

Arbor Day is America’s National Tree Holiday, founded by J. Sterling Morton in Nebraska in 1872 to commemorate the importance of trees to humanity. Imagine all the uses trees have. That’s why on this day, it’s recommended you plant a tree and educate others about their importance. In 1970 Arbor Day was proclaimed the last Friday in April.

 

Celebrating this day is a wonderful way to integrate lessons and meet Common Core objectives. You can combine science, math, literacy, and social studies and create meaningful lessons that result in a lifetime appreciation of nature. The problem is finding lessons.

 

I especially like this Building Your Own Greenhouse Worksheet because it offers students a chance to grow their own seeds. Delayed gratification is an unexpected lesson here as well as the uncertainty of nature. I have students track the growth and write a poem about what they and the plant feel.

 

Another good ongoing project is asking students to research the many uses of wood. They make a list, which we post in the room for the rest of the year, so they can add to it as they awake to new uses. I have them write their name next to the new ideas.

 

One thing I always do on Arbor Day is read Shel Silverstein’s The Giving Tree. It really gets students’ attention and helps them develop an appreciation for trees. You can also show them The Giving Tree slideshow.

 

Next, I show The Great Kapok Tree video by Lynne Cherry and tell students to compare the two stories. It makes for a great discussion and also can be used for a variety of activities.

 

You should check out when your state celebrates Arbor Day and also note your state tree. For an art lesson, have each student research and draw a tree, assigning them by state.

 

I’ve found the following sites offer a nice variety of lessons, activities and resources. Check them out to find what you need.

 

Arbor Day in the Classroom

Lessons by subject matter – this is an excellent selection and easy to use, but basic.

 

Arbor Day Lessons and Teacher Resources

Find some excellent lessons and videos, mostly for K to 8

 

Arbor Day Tree Lesson Plans

A lesson site that includes good science ideas

 

From Arbor Day to Earth Day

Civics lessons for older students

 

Trees/Arbor Day Lesson Plans

More lessons, crafts, and activities

 

Tree Crafts and Arbor Day Projects for Kids

This Pinterest site offers lots of images of ideas for younger students