Synopsis: After reading and discussing the book The Giving Tree, students reflect and write about the gift they would most like to give.
Students will discuss the message of The Giving Tree.
Students will write a message about giving to be shared with classmates and others.
Electronic ways of sharing student gift ideas (after reading aloud and discussing):
Create an online book using a tool such as Bookemon (reviewed here) or a Voicethread (reviewed here) collection of narrated images. Be sure to include some colorful images, either digital pictures or clip art to make it into a "giving tree." Have each student compose one page of the book, working on a classroom computer or as a whole class on your interactive whiteboard. Share the online book by emailing the URL to class parents and others with whom you would like to share your "gift." Allow others to comment on the book, adding their own "gift ideas" to the tree. Share the URL for the finished product via email with your class parents! This no-cost gift will mean more than something purchased at a store.
Or, with younger students, create a "big book" using one PowerPoint slide per student for his/her giving tree message. Allow students to compose the visual elements as they wish. Combine the slides into one show* and print it landscape mode on large format paper. Laminate and bind. Then allow students to "sign out" the book to take it home for the evening and read it to parents.
If your elementary school has the capability to share a computer slide show in the cafeteria, why not permit every student in the school create a Giving Tree slide and run the show on a "loop" throughout lunchtime during December, adding new slides as you get them. In a middle or high school, a "graffiti wall" (paper or web-based) of Giving Tree ideas may work better, as long as someone monitors for appropriateness.
2nd Grade, 3rd Grade, 4th Grade