Remarkable Trees of Virginia Project - Day 1 Youth Activities

Remarkable Trees of Virginia


Description of the activity Day 1 (One hour)

Explain to students that a search is underway to find Virginia 's remarkable trees, and they are invited to participate. Trees can be remarkable for their size, beauty, historic significance, uniqueness, or simply because they are important to a community. Trees are a remarkable, renewable natural resource. In addition to providing us many of the wood and paper products we use in daily life, trees add beauty, provide shade, reduce energy costs, remove air pollution, and reduce storm water run-off.

Ask students to think about their favorite trees. Have them draw one of the trees from memory, adding as much detail about the tree's crown, trunk, branches, leaves, etc. as they can remember. Students should draw a tree that they can visit within 24 hours so that they can re-draw their pictures the next day. Ask them to date their pictures.

Next give students the student activity sheet, Leaf Characteristics of Virginia Trees . Ask them to think about the leaves on their favorite tree. Are the leaves broad or needle-like? If they have broad leaves, are they simple or compound? If needle-like, are the needles single or in clusters? Ask them to add a picture of the leaf to their drawing. (Note: to aid in this discussion, place some sample leaves on an overhead projector, illustrating the characteristics on the activity sheet.)

Ask students to visit their tree (can be done as a class activity on the school campus or as a homework activity if their tree is at home) and note the leaf and other tree characteristics they may have overlooked. Ask them to get a leaf sample or draw a detailed picture of the leaf, and bring it back to class for the second activity.


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