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Arbor Day in the classroom

Celebrate Arbor Day in your classroom! It’s easy as 1, 2, tree! Arbor Day is a holiday that promotes planting and protecting trees. Illinois celebrates Arbor Day on the last Friday in April. But really, every day is a great day to celebrate trees! 

Communities often celebrate Arbor Day by planting trees with school children. Listed below are activities and lesson plans developed by the Arboretum expert educators to help you celebrate the holiday and teach your students about the importance of trees and conservation. These activities can be great enhancements to your curriculum year round!

Register online to request a speaker, booth or Tree Tag Kit for Arbor Day 2015. Registration for Tree Tag Kits is now available (click the link below). Registration details are coming soon for speakers and booths!

Tree Tagging Kits

REGISTER HERE for 2015 Tree Tag Kits

Promote understanding and value of trees by highlighting the environmental benefits of individual trees. With our Arbor Day Tree Tag Kits, a class or group can calculate the dollar value of the benefits of a particular tree, bringing awareness of how useful trees are in addition to their beauty.

Depending on the grade level and number of students, this hands-on activity will take approximately 2 to 3 hours and is best done over two days.  Internet access is required. Parts of this activity are best done indoors while other parts require students to be outdoors.

Each kit contains:

  • 11x17 inch weather resistant tags (made from recycled materials)
  • Lesson plans
  • Arbor Day celebration ideas


Classroom Activities for Arbor Day:

Tree Census Lesson Plans (Middle School Grades 6th-8th)

These lesson plans are based on the science of the Chicago-area Regional Tree Census.

Tree Census Activities for Middle School-Final

Tree Census Activities-Student Data Sheets
(Student data sheets are included in the PDF lesson plan, but have also been seperately included as a word document (.doc), so that you can customize them for your individual school site and classroom needs). 

Tree Identification Resources for Students and Teachers

Plant Trees

  How to Plant A Seedling   

Grades pre-K through 2


Grades 3 through 5


Grades 6 through 8


Grades 9 through 12


More Resources

Arbor Day Foundation's website provides lots of resources to celebrate Arbor Day including:

  • Games and videos for youth and educators
  • A Teacher's Guide to Arbor Month from the Minnesota Arbor Month Partnership