When I came across Bargain Bound’s Thankful Tree, I knew right away it was something I wanted to try. The craft side of it was simple enough for non-crafty me. Plus I loved the concept of expressing thanks each day in November.
How It Works: Everyday in November, ask your kids what they are thankful for. Write it on a leaf. Place the leaf on the branches at the top of the tree. At the end of the month you’ll have a tree full of thankful thoughts!
- Brown Paper - You can use butcher paper or bulletin board paper. I bought 6 feet of bulletin board paper from my local educational supply store for $0.55 a foot. My tree is really big. I could have gotten away with 4 feet.
- Construction Paper - I explain more of how I created the leaves below.
- Tape - Get something that is safe to use on your painted walls! I bought Mavalus tape (used for classrooms) for $3.39. You could also use painter’s tape.
- Dry Erase Marker - I am using this for my laminated leaves, but any marker would do if you don’t laminate your leaves.
I made 1 leaf for each day in November, which has 30 days. I also decided to laminate my leaves so I could use them again and again each year. I made 1 set of leaves for each of my children. I ended up with a total of 60 laminated leaves.
I cut out different colors and shapes of leaves using an Ellison Die Cut machine at the educational supply store. I brought my own paper from home. They didn’t charge me to use the machine, but asked for a donation. Check your library to see if they have one for the public to use. My mom’s library does! (If you don’t have access to a die cut machine, you could cut them out free hand or use real leaves from outside.)
Here is where the all the teachers reading are going to laugh at me…
I had no idea what I was doing with the laminating and the die cut machine. I was planning on cutting out all the leaves, laminating them, and then cutting them out again. Thankfully, the owner of the store explained to me how much easier it would be to laminate my sheets and then cut out the leaves. What a time saver! The total laminating cost was only $2.00.
Total cost for project: $11.22 (including my donation)
Estimated cost to repeat this next year: $3.00 for more brown paper (or free if I save the tree!)
It isn’t too late to create a thankful tree in your home for this month! If you do, I would love to hear some of the things your kids are thankful. So far Grace has been thankful for Play-Doh, smoothies, and swings!
Do you have any Thanksgiving traditions that go beyond a big family feast?