Cycle 4

Wishes for Trees

As we move into the summer months, in this exploration, let’s find ways to make and share wishes/hopes/ideas to celebrate the earth and its future by making, sharing, and writing to trees.

Before you begin with your child, here’s suggested prep for this activity:

  1. Paper
  2. String or yarn
  3. Pencil or crayons for drawing


Go for a walk or look out your window. Find a favorite tree. Spend some time with it. Sit in it’s shade. Touch its bark. Listen to the leaves move in the wind. You can bring a pad of paper and sketch the tree or take a picture of it to bring home to draw from.


Make Wishes for Trees: Find scraps of paper. Draw a leaf on the paper. Cut it out. Write a question or wish for the trees. Punch a hole in the top of your paper leaf and thread a piece of yarn or thread through it. Then, hang your leaf with the written question or wish on a tree in your yard, a park, or a friend or family member’s house.

Example: Tree Wish, Child Age 5:

Write a letter to a favorite tree. Let the tree know what you appreciate about it. Or, ask it a question. Or, if you could give the tree a voice, write what you think the tree would like to say!

Hang your wish or question leaf on the tree as an offering to share with others as they pass by.

Here are a few examples of letters kids have written to trees:

Dear Red Oak Tree, 

                          you must’ve seen it all. You have been here for hundreds of years. You’ve seen many things rise and fall. You’ve seen smiles, joy, but also tears. Oh beautiful Red Oak tree; please share your wisdom with me. 

                                 -Alex, Age 8

Dear Trees:

There are many things to thank you for. One of them is for providing us humans with oxygen. Another is for providing us with shade. Both of those things are important to me. Also, thanks for the wood and paper. I am so, so sorry that we use so much of each. Just wondering, do you guys like when we build treehouses in you? I am 99.9999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999% sure that you do not like being cut down. What is photosynthesis like? Also, how does sunlight taste? Most of us are trying to stop you from being cut down, but some of us just don’t care. I apologize on the behalf of the latter. I’d like to talk more, but I have more that I have to do.

             Sincerely, Axel, Age 9

Dear palm tree,

              Hi. My name is Han. I just want to thank you for making the desert look so beautiful.When I think of you, you make me think about the hot sunny day in Hawaii drinking lemonade. But people are hurting you because of people creating large cities, making the forest into a farmland, and etc. You’re so tall and so cool. You stand strong when a hurricane comes by. Anyways, thank you for making Arizona look great.


                                                                                   Han, Age 8

Dear Palo Verde Tree,

I can’t wait for you to bloom as many flowers as you can and to put Christmas decorations on you in my front yard for show. I love your bright green color and you make my yard so beautiful. You are the spotlight and the showstopper! 

I’ll climb you soon, Grace, Age 8.

Dear tree

thank you for the oxygen we breath. we wouldn’t be here with out you.thanks for the food when we need it.the fruit I like off you trees is a peach,lemons,and chocolate. thank,s for the shade when needed. I use the shade the most when my brother is doing baseball.


                                                       Ashleigh .W, Age 5 (dictated by parent)


Part of being a writer is sharing your work and ideas with others! You might have other people you want to share this with, we invite you to send this out or take a picture to send to friends and family who would be interested and want to see your wishes for trees! And share with us! We’d love to see them. You can upload a photo of your tree and/or writing using the comments section below.

In addition to the comments below, you can share your creations on social media with the hashtags #WriteNow #NWP #kidwriting. Tag the National Writing Project on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram so that we can help others find what you post. Finally, follow our publication Write Now on Medium or sign up for the Write Now newsletter.