Resources for Early Childhood Activity 4 – We All Need Trees

Trees are filled with aromatic woods, savory spices, smelly twigs, or yummy fruits. In these experiences, children will explore trees using their noses and mouths!

This is one of 11 activities that can be found in PLT’s Environmental Experiences for Early Childhood guideTo get the activity, attend a training either in person or online and receive PLT’s Early Childhood guide. Below are some supporting resources for this activity. 

STUDENT PAGES

Download the copyright free student pages that are included with this activity:

Family and Friends Page (PDF)

Spanish Student Page:

Familia y amigos (PDF)

RECOMMENDED READING

Expand your students’ learning and imaginations. Help students meet their reading goals while building upon concepts learned in this activity with the following children’s book recommendations:

FAMILY ACTIVITY

Try a simple variation of this activity to engage children in the outdoors at home. Download this fun and easy-to-do family activity.

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES

Every month we carefully select new tools and resources that enhance PLT’s lessons. These include educational apps, videos, posters, interactive websites, careers information, and teacher-generated materials. Browse a chronological listing below:

  • Fruit Tree 101 Program

    The Fruit Tree Planting Foundation’s Fruit Tree 101 program brings high-quality fruit trees and shrubs, equipment, on-site orchard design expertise and oversight, horticultural workshops, and aftercare training and manuals to schoolyards across the country. By planting fruit trees, students will improve the surrounding air, soil, and water and provide a local source of healthy nutrition. There is no deadline to apply; applications are accepted on a rolling basis. Recipients must be public schools, nonprofits, or government entities that own the planting site, showcase commitment to caring for the trees in perpetuity, have a source of irrigation nearby, and can help coordinate local volunteers to participate on the day of planting.

  • Why Would Anyone Cut a Tree Down? – for Grades 1-3

    In order to reduce tree hazards, protect other trees, or to get wood, it is sometimes necessary to cut trees. Why Would Anyone Cut a Tree Down?, a 41-page book published by the U.S. Forest Service, teaches students in grades 1–3 why it is important to sometimes remove trees from the environment. The book also provides tips for planting a new tree. It is available for free download as a PDF, or you can purchase a hardcopy.

  • Early Childhood Education

    Are you looking to tap into the Early Childhood education arena? Visit All Education Schools’ clearinghouse of early childhood education resources to explore professional organizations, licensing and credentials, reliable research, educator blogs, and more – all related to Early Childhood. Whether you’re just embarking on an early childhood education career or already work with children, you’ll find plenty of useful information.

  • Let’s Play Outside Literacy Cards for ELLs

    Check out this preschool picture book (literacy cards) of outdoor words and actions, created by the Collaborative Leadership Fellows Program at the University of Minnesota Rochester. The cards feature outdoor play action words such as “draw,” “climb,” and “jump” in multiple languages. The words are also depicted using an image and the language translations are available for English, Spanish, Chinese, Cambodian, Somali, and Arabic. The languages were selected based on high populations of individuals speaking them in the mid-western United States. Download the “Let’s Play Outside!” booklet to connect with English Language Learners (ELLs) near you!

  • LeafSnap

    Leafsnap is a free app that can be downloaded onto the iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad (Andriod version in development). Leafsnap uses visual recognition software to help identify tree species from individual leaf photographs you take in the field. This application contains high-resolution images of bark, flowers, fruit, seeds, and more. Currently Leafsnap specializes in tree species found in the Northeastern United States, but expansion to include all US regions is underway.

  • Tree Product Images

    Print-out pages containing many examples of everyday products that come from trees! 

  • WildLab Bird

    A free app that can be downloaded onto any Apple device (try iBird Lite for Android). Use WildLab Bird to learn the basics of bird identification. This application uses audio, photographs, maps, and the process of elimination to help identify over 200 bird species. Sightings can also be entered into a national bird watching database for comparison. 

  • AllTrails

    A free app that can be downloaded onto Apple and Android devices. AllTrails helps users to get out and discover the outdoors. Use it to plan a national park visit, find a hiking path near home, or map a new trail of your own! AllTrails can help you find local places to run, hike, bike, fish, and more in the outdoors. You can even upload photos and images to trails you create.

  • Fairy Tale

    A free app that can be downloaded onto Apple devices. This story production tool can be used to create a personal story and enhance it by adding your own drawings, audio, and animation. The illustrations can be moved, expanded, reduced, or rotated with touch, and you can record your own voice as narrator.

  • Easy Chart

    A free app that can be downloaded onto Apple or Android devices. This is a good tool for teachers and classrooms. Easily create bar, line and pie charts that you can customize, save and e-mail or upload. The charts you create can be saved using multiple color schemes and in multiple sizes. The app also works without an internet connection.

  • Dawn Publications – If You Love Honey

    “If you love honey, then you must love honeybees” so says Dawn Publications’ children’s book, If You Love Honey.  If You Love Honey takes readers on an exploration through the benefits and beauty that prevail through the relationships of living, breathing organisms that co-exist in nature. The colorful illustrations and simple concepts help young minds foster curiosity and develop an appreciation for nature. This book explores the importance of oak trees, mushrooms, soil, earthworms, and more. Be sure to check out the end of the book for fun facts about pollinators, seed spreaders, and beneficial insects.

  • Epic! For Educators

    Are you looking for new literature connections to support your favorite PLT lessons? This growing Epic! online library offers thousands of picture books, chapter books, early readers, and even nonfiction books (think Common Core Connections!) that elementary teachers can access free of cost. Registered users receive unlimited access to books and customized recommendations for readers’ age levels and interests. Epic! is available for iPads, iPhones, and Android devices.

  • Nature Maestro® App Series

    With Nature Maestro®, sound recordist and composer Dennis Hysom is your guide. Use this series of applications to explore sounds in nature. You might compose a soundscape for the rainforest, build a nature scene using audio paired with imagery, and discover fun facts about animals all along the way. Immerse yourself in these biomes to compose and share creative soundscapes and then share them with others.