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Helping Others – Giving Tree




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Title – Helping Others – Giving Tree
By – Dr. Kathleen Wild
Secondary Subjects – Art
Grade Level – 1-4

Materials Needed:

  • One – 4 to 5 foot artificial Christmas tree
  • One – package of clothes pins
  • One – medium wicker basket
  • Many – new gloves, mittens, hats, and scarves in childrens sizes
  • Also – socks or knee-highs can also be used or even wash clothes and hand towels.
  • Optional – art supplies for making or decorating flyers


  • Have all of the children in the class sit down in a circle or at their desks.
  • As the teacher, have a discussion with your students about how there are children less fortunate than them. While having this discussion, talk about how changing the world can start with them.
  • Now it is time to talk about how the students can help other children. Come up with your own list of things to clothespin to the tree. Examples would be gloves, mittens, socks, scarves and hats. You may also come up with other needed items on your own.
  • Next, ask each student what they would like to contribute to the tree. Make up a list and have each student write their name on the list and next to their name what they will bring in to add to the tree.
  • Give the students about three or four days or the weekend to bring in the items.
  • On the third or fourth day, gather the students around the table or desks or even a sharing circle. Pick up the basket and ask each student to place their item into the basket.
  • Now have the students put up the tree.
  • Now that the tree is up, have one student at a time pick something out of the basket and take a clothespin and clip that item to the tree.
  • Have the students stand back and look at the tree. Now they can see what a difference each of them can make to help another needy child.
  • Let the students know how proud you are of them for taking the first step to make a difference in helping others who are in need.
  • As a teacher, you can call around and donate the items to a charity or even a family at school who really can use them.

Note from a LessonPlanPage.comstaff member:

      Our church partners with a local school to outfit children with supplies that aren’t provided by other organizations. The kids were always losing their mittens and came to school without socks, so we started the “Sock and Mitten” tree, so all the kids could enjoy recess. After many years of doing this, an organization came to us to say that they had all the clothes they needed, but no one ever donates children’s underwear. So now we have a “Sock and Mitten (

and gloves and hats and scarves

      ) Tree with an “Underwear Under the Tree” skirt. My husband put green battery-powered LED lights in the tips of a red glove for the tree topper and I made a red felt tree skirt adorned with adorable green undershirts and undies fit for any elf. Students could create or decorate sock and mitten cutouts to hang as placeholders on the tree until the actual items arrive. They could color or draw socks and mittens on a letter or on posters advertising the project. It was fun for us to adapt popular Christmas songs and nursery rhymes to gain interest in the event. Most of them were very specific, we are still working on “

I’ll donate for Christmas / You can count on me / I’ll bring socks and mittens for tots / And underwear for under the tree,” but you might be able to use:

Deck the tree with socks and mittens
Fa la la la la – la la la la    (Hats, gloves, scarves or even “mooh-la-la”)
It’s for school kids we’re outfittin’
Fa la la la la – la la la la    (With long johns, ear muffs or with “mooh-la-la”)
They are needin’ warm apparel
Fa la la la la – la la la la    (Undershirts, briefs, but nothing “ooh-la-la”)
Please make sure they’re new and sterile
Fa la la la la – la la la la    (Ha ha ha ha ha – la la la la)

E-Mail Dr. Kathleen Wild!

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