FREE Teacher Resources: Christmas Trees; Science, Math and Language

Christmas is my favorite holiday and not a minute past Thanksgiving  do I to  start decorating, listening to Christmas music and baking Christmas cookies.  I also love birthdays, so it is no surprise that our Lord’s birthday tops the list.

This weekend Tim and I will take the kids to go cut down a real Christmas tree. It is a tradition that my family has been doing since I was a kid. We support a local Christmas tree farm family: Log Cabin Pines, right here in Elko, MN. The smell of fresh pine in the house is amazing. I also enjoy curling up in a chair near the lit tree with a cup of tea listening to Christmas music. I digress, this post is suppose to be about teacher resources.

Christmas Trees; Science, Math and Language

Literacy/Comprehension

I collect Christmas books, some secular some religious.

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One of my favorite Christmas stories (besides Farm Country Christmas Eve) is A Wish to be a Christmas Tree by Colleen Monroe. This beautiful story is about an old spruce tree that was never chosen by a family. You can watch a video of the book being read here

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The tree becomes very sad, but woodland creatures try to explain to him how valuable he is to them by providing food and shelter.

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The woodland creatures cheer him up by decorating him for Christmas, using berries and other items from nature. Along the way the old tree realizes the real meaning of friendship.

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What a heart warming story! It also shows the great value in Christmas trees whether they are chosen or not.

Story follow up: Ask the students simple questions to promote comphrension

  • Where do families got to cut down Christmas trees? -Farm, field, etc
  • Why was the old tree sad? -not chosen, wanted to be a Christmas tree
  • How does the old tree help other forest animals? -food, shelter
  • How did the forest animals help the old tree?- decorated him
Sleeping Bear Press (publishers of Wish to be a Christmas Tree) has a FANTASTIC FREE teacher’s guide for the story.

DYK: Minnesota Christmas tree farm families raise and cut about 500,000 trees each year. For every tree harvested 1-3 seedlings are planted in its place. Making Christmas trees a very renewable and sustainable resource. (source: MN Grown)

DYK: One acre of Christmas trees can remove 8,000 pounds of carbon from the air. Younger trees do a better job of removing carbon, so as Christmas trees get cut and replaced, more carbon is being removed vs just letting the trees live longer. (source: MN Christmas Tree Association).

Want to learn more?

The National Christmas Tree Association, along with experienced teachers and a grant through the USDA, have put together a great website to integrate learning about Christmas trees in your classroom or home. REAL Trees 4 Kids website has curriculum and activities for grades K-12. This a great FREE resource for teachers.

 

Are you decorating a real Christmas tree this year?

~Emily


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