Lesson 10: I Am Thankful for Trees, Plants, and Flowers

Primary 1: I Am a Child of God, (2000), 28–30


Purpose

To help each child feel gratitude to Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ for trees, plants, and flowers.

Preparation

  1. 1.

    Prayerfully study Genesis 1:11–13.

  2. 2.

    Put a fruit, vegetable, or small branch in a cloth or paper bag.

  3. 3.

    Prepare small samples of fruit, vegetable, or bread. Check with the children’s parents to make sure none of the children is allergic to the food.

  4. 4.

    Materials needed:

    1. a.

      A Bible.

    2. b.

      If possible, obtain pictures of local trees, plants, and flowers, and bring a few small wooden objects, such as a pencil, spoon, and bowl, from your home.

    3. c.

      Cutout 1-4, flowers (similar cutouts can also be found in Primary Visual Aids Cutouts set 3).

    4. d.

      Picture 1-22, Tree in Blossom; picture 1-23, A Nest with Baby Birds.

  5. 5.

    Make the necessary preparations for any Enrichment Activities you want to use.

Learning Activities

Invite a child to give the opening prayer.

Attention Activity

Pass around the bag with the fruit, vegetable, or branch in it, closed so the children cannot see what is inside. Have the children feel the bag and guess what is in it. Tell them not to guess out loud until everyone has had a chance to feel the bag. When everyone has felt the bag, let the children tell you what they think is in the bag. Take the item out of the bag, and talk about its appearance and usefulness.

Trees, plants, and flowers make the earth a beautiful place to live

Remind the children that everything on the earth was created according to Heavenly Father’s plan. On the third day of creation, Jesus created trees, plants, and flowers (see Genesis 1:11–13). Explain that Heavenly Father and Jesus wanted to make the earth beautiful with trees, plants, and flowers.

Display the cutout of flowers and any pictures of trees, plants, or flowers you obtained. Let the children talk about experiences they have had with trees, plants, or flowers.

Story

Tell a story that teaches the children that trees, plants, and flowers make the earth a beautiful place to live. Talk about the beautiful plants that grow where you live. If applicable to your area, you may want to use picture 1-22, Tree in Blossom, and the following ideas:

Kelly has a favorite tree to play under. One morning her mother wakes her and says that she has a surprise for Kelly to see. Kelly’s favorite tree is covered with beautiful white blossoms that look like popcorn. Kelly asks how popcorn got on her favorite tree, and her mother explains the importance of blossoms.

Song

Have the children stand and sing “Popcorn Popping” (Children’s Songbook, p. 242), using hand actions as suggested by the words. Explain that in the springtime, apricot trees grow white flowers that look like popcorn.

I looked out the window, and what did I see?
Popcorn popping on the apricot tree!
Spring had brought me such a nice surprise,
Blossoms popping right before my eyes.I could take an armful and make a treat,
A popcorn ball that would smell so sweet.
It wasn’t really so, but it seemed to be
Popcorn popping on the apricot tree.

Explain that some flowers grow on trees, some grow on bushes and vines, and some grow right out of the ground. Invite the children to talk about flowers they have seen.

  • How do we use flowers to make our world beautiful? (We plant them in flower gardens, make bouquets, and wear them in our hair or on our clothes.)

  • Why do we give someone flowers? (For special occasions and to make people happy.)

Plants and trees are necessary for us to live

Story

Explain that plants and trees are necessary for us to live. Display picture 1-22, Tree in Blossom, and tell a story about a tree’s many uses. Use the following ideas or talk about other ways people in your area use trees:

First the birds use the tree for their home. They carefully build a nest, and the mother bird lays eggs in it. (Show picture 1-23, A Nest with Baby Birds.) When the baby birds hatch from the eggs, the tree provides a good home for them. It protects them from the hot sun, from the rain, and from animals on the ground that would harm them. The tree also provides fruit for the family that lives nearby. The children play in the shade of the tree and attach a swing to a large branch. When part of the tree dies, the family cuts it down and uses it for firewood to keep the house warm.

  • Why are trees important to us? (They provide food, wood, shade, and a place to play.)

Show some items from your home or the classroom that are made of wood, and talk about the many uses of wood.

  • What other things do you know of that are made of wood?

Explain that we also use plants in many ways. One of the most important things plants provide for us is food.

  • What kinds of plants do we eat?

If any of the local pictures you have obtained show plants that are used for food, show them now.

Activity

Talk with the children about the grains, fruits, and vegetables grown locally. Explain that grains are often made into bread and cereal. Ask each child to name his or her favorite food that comes from a plant. Let the children taste the sample of fruit, vegetable, or bread that you brought. Tell them about the plant or tree that it came from.

Explain that Heavenly Father had Jesus create many different plants and trees so we would have good things to eat.

  • How can we thank Heavenly Father for our food? (By remembering to ask for a blessing on the food before we eat.)

Testimony

Share your testimony of the love Heavenly Father and Jesus have for each of us. Remind the children to remember that love every day when they see beautiful trees, plants, and flowers.

Enrichment Activities

Choose some of these activities to use during the lesson.

  1. 1.

    Bring some seeds (such as flower seeds, beans, or wheat) and a paper cup full of soil for each child to take home. Show the children how to plant their seeds, and remind them that they will need to provide water and sunlight for the seeds to grow.

  2. 2.

    Have the children repeat after you the words to the song “Little Seeds Lie Fast Asleep” (Children’s Songbook, p. 243). Then have the children pretend to be the little seeds waking up and stretching while you sing or say the words again.

  3. 3.

    Cut petals, leaves, and stems out of colored paper and have each child paste some of them in the shape of a flower on another piece of paper. Label the page I am thankful for beautiful flowers.

  4. 4.

    Bring a fruit or vegetable that has seeds inside. Tell the children that there is a surprise inside. Cut open the fruit or vegetable so the children can see the seeds. Explain that when the seeds are planted and provided with water and sunshine, they will grow and produce more fruit or vegetables.

  5. 5.

    Take the children for a nature walk outside to look at different types of plants. If the weather does not permit going outdoors, the children might look out the window and take turns telling what plants they can see. If appropriate, explain the seasonal changes that affect the plants and trees.

Additional Activities for Younger Children

  1. 1.

    Show picture 1-22, Tree in Blossom. Tell the children that Heavenly Father had Jesus Christ create plants and trees (see Genesis 1:11–13). Explain that trees give us wood and fruit. Plants give us fruit and vegetables.

  2. 2.

    Bring a plant or a part of a plant (such as a flower or some leaves) for the children to see, feel, and smell. Give each child a chance to touch or hold the plant. Point out its color, smell, or beauty. Express your gratitude for plants, flowers, and trees.

  3. 3.

    Recite the following verse, demonstrating the actions. Then have the children do the actions with you while you recite the verse again.

    I Dig

    I dig and dig and dig (make digging motions),
    And then I plant some seeds (bend over and pretend to plant seeds).
    I rake and rake and rake (make raking motions with long strokes),
    And then I pull some weeds (bend low and make pulling motions).
    The sun shines bright and warm (make arms form a circle),
    The rain comes down, and so (bring arms down, wiggling fingers)
    Right there before my eyes,
    My seeds begin to grow (push fingers of left hand between fingers of right hand).
  4. 4.

    Sing “In the Leafy Treetops” (Children’s Songbook, p. 240) with the children.