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The Giving Tree Activities and Lesson Plans for 2024

Elementary teachers looking for lesson plans and activities for The Giving Tree will find this post helpful. It includes resource recommendations, free teaching ideas, and information about the book. You’ll have everything you need to deliver engaging interactive read aloud lessons based on this story.

With themes of kindess, this The Giving Tree picture book by Shel Silverstein is a favorite in 1st, 2nd and 3rd grade classrooms. It will be a big hit in your classroom too! Learn more about this book below!

Engage Your Students with The Giving Tree Lesson Plans & Activities in 3 Easy Steps:

  1. Read a summary of The Giving Tree. You can find it in the section below.
  2. Check out the teaching ideas for reading comprehension strategies, grammar topics and social emotional learning skills that can be taught using this children’s book.
  3. Download the book companion to make lesson planning simple with The Giving Tree reading comprehension questions, writing prompts, teaching ideas & no-prep extension activities.

THE GIVING TREE SUMMARY

Shel Silverstein’s book, The Giving Tree, tells the story of a tree that loves a boy. When the boy was young, he would visit the tree each day. The boy would climb her branches, eat her apples and rest in her shade. It made the tree happy to spend time with the boy.

As the boy grew older, he would spend a lot of time away from the tree. One day, the boy visited the tree and she was happy to see him. The boy asked the tree for money but she had none. The tree suggested the boy take her apples and sell them for money so he did. This made the tree happy.

Time passed and eventually the boy returned to the tree. This time he asked the tree for a house. The tree told the boy to take her branches and build a house, so he did. It made the tree happy to help the boy but she missed him. Years went by and when the boy returned he was much older. This time he wanted a boat. The tree told the boy to cut down her trunk and build a boat but she was not very happy.

When the boy eventually returned, he was much older. The tree was sad because she had nothing else to give the boy. However, the boy said all he wanted was a place to rest because he was tired. The tree suggested the boy sit on her stump and rest. This made her very happy.

THE GIVING TREE LESSON PLAN IDEAS

Each of our 400+ Starts With a Story book companions come with a teacher’s guide to make lesson planning quick and easy, printable worksheets and digital resources that cover ALL of the standards-based reading comprehension skills.

When it comes to writing lesson plans and finding activities for The Giving Tree, we’ve already done all of the heavy lifting for you.

We found this book was especially good at teaching the topics listed below.

READING COMPREHENSION QUESTIONS

The text-based The Giving Tree reading comprehension questions focus on:

  • analyzing character
  • cause and effect
  • identifying theme,
  • message and moral
  • making predictions
  • sequencing

LITERATURE-BASED SOCIAL EMOTIONAL LEARNING LESSONS

We found this story to be a great SEL picture book to promote:

  • kindness

GRAMMAR, VOCABULARY & WORD STUDY

  • multiple meaning words
  • irregular verbs
  • action verbs
  • pronouns

THE GIVING TREE ACTIVITIES

You’ll receive all of the following resources aligned to the story:

  • comprehension questions
  • 30 writing prompts with themed paper
  • vocabulary activities
  • word study print & go activities
  • ideas for grammar lessons with focus sentence printables
  • social emotional learning discussion topics
  • graphic organizers to target specific comprehension skills and strategies
elementary teacher reading aloud a picture book to his students
elementary teacher reading aloud a picture book to her students

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BOOK INFO FOR ELEMENTARY TEACHERS

What are the reading levels for The Giving Tree?

  • Lexile® Measure: 530L
  • Guided Reading Level: N
  • DRA Level: 28
  • Accelerated Reader Level (ARC): 2.9-3

Who is the author? Who is the illustrator?

The book was written by Shel Silverstein. It was illustrated by Shel Silverstein.

What genre is The Giving Tree?

It is a fiction book. You may want to check out our genre activities or read our blog post, How to Teach Genre to Elementary Students.

How many pages are in the book?

The story is 64 pages long.

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