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Provide a dry pinecone for each of your children. Have them turn their pinecones into winter trees by dabbing on thick green and white paint. While the paint is still wet, let them sprinkle on salt for a "frosty" texture.
Cut thin paper plates in half, then into fourths to make triangular Christmas tree shapes (four per plate). Give one to each of your children and have them color their shapes with green markers. Then let them decorate their trees by gluing on gift-wrap scraps, scraps of foil, and star stickers. To complete, punch a hole in the top of each tree and tie on a red ribbon hanger.


Select five index cards and cut each one into two interlocking puzzle pieces. On one of the pieces, write a numeral from 1 to 5. On the other piece, rubber-stamp that number of leaf shapes. Continue until all five puzzles are complete. Then give the pieces to your children and invite them to put the puzzles back together.

At a Christmas tree lot, look for discarded sprigs of different kinds of evergreen trees. Collect two springs of each kind of tree. Later, mix up the sprigs and invite your children to find the match-ups.


Take your children on a walk to look for interesting trees. Point out deciduous trees (those that lose their leaves in the fall) and evergreen trees (those that keep their leaves or needles all year). Keep a record of the trees you see, and use the numbers to make a chart when you return.

For each of your children, draw a bare tree with branches on four pieces of paper. Let the children decorate their trees to represent the four seasons by gluing on torn scraps of tissue paper.
Fall: Red and yellow tissue scraps for leaves
Winter: White tissue scraps for snow
Spring: Pink tissue scraps for blossoms
Summer: Green tissue scraps for leaves

Put each child's papers together to make a book, if you wish.


Tune: "I'm a Little Teapot"
I'm a little fir tree,
Short and stout. (Stand.)
See my bushy branches
All spread out. (Hold arms out at sides.)
Some trees drop their leaves
Down to the ground, (Flutter fingers to floor.)
But I have needles
All year round. (Hold fingers out straight.)
                            Elizabeth Scofield

Use a Christmas tree cookie cutter to cut tree shapes out of bread slices. Tint cream cheese with green food coloring and spread it onto the shapes. Invite your children to decorate the trees with raisins, nuts, or fruit bits.
FOR ADDITIONAL TREE ACTIVITIES – See the Arbor Day unit at the Holiday Station.