How to Create a Peace Tree in Your School
A Peace Tree can be created for the entire school which would be a wonderful activity that can involve all the students and a beautiful symbol for our youth to celebrate throughout the year. Peace Trees can also be created in individual classrooms and grow throughout the year. The following steps outline how to create your Peace Tree.
- Collect leafless branches from around the yard and plant in a large pot or planter. Place planter in front foyer or classroom. The tree can range from 4’ to 8’ high, however, it should have many many branches to hang the decorations.
- Every student in the school should research and learn about symbols from different faiths and cultures from around the world
- Students should select one symbol to create out of construction paper, paper mache, sticks (be creative). The symbol can be from their faith/culture or a faith/culture other than their own.
- Peace symbols from different faiths and symbols from different cultures can include, the Moon and the Star from Islam, a Chinese Lantern, the Star of David from Judaism, a Diya from Diwali, the
Om from Hinduism, the Cross from Christianity, a Kwanzaa Lamp, Mehndi Hands, the Ying and the Yang from Taoism, a Japanese Doll etc. Visit www.sandalwoodproductions.com/peacetree and click decorations to see samples.
- On an eight foot tree, symbols should be approximately 4” x 4”.
- Teachers should ensure that there is a diversity of symbols represented on the tree to reflect the true meaning of The Peace Tree - ‘diversity in unity’.
- Each class can go down to the Peace Tree in the foyer and place their symbols on the tree.
- One class can be responsible for creating one large origami paper crane to place at the top of the tree as the paper crane was the inspiration for creating the Peace Tree. This can be made out of colourful wrapping paper as well or large white paper with peace written in different colours and different languages.
- Throughout the year, as students research different countries, festivals and cultures, they can add more life and colour to The Peace Tree and create new symbols, so it continues to grow and highlight the beauty of ‘diversity in unity’ which reflects peace.
- During Remembrance Day, students can also place their messages of peace on the Peace Tree written in hearts or leaves or a symbol they feel reflects peace.
- Peace can be written in different languages to hang on the tree.
- There are numerous activities that can be carried out in class that connect back to the Peace Tree throughout the year to remind students of our hope for our world.
- By the end of the year, the Peace Tree will be adorned with ornaments, symbols and messages from all our diverse cultures and faiths so we can all celebrate Peace Tree Day together – a day when students of all cultures and faiths will dress up in clothes from their cultures or a culture other than their own. Students can celebrate by sharing dance/musical performances, conducting ‘How to Workshops’, and prepare a Multicultural Food Market where they can raise funds to give to children in war torn countries. On Peace Tree Day children also bring in clothes and old toys to give to underprivileged children. Let’s celebrate peace together on Peace Tree Day on June 1st from 2006.
- It is our hope that the Peace Tree will be created in homes, schools and cities around the world in our effort to spread peace, hope, diversity and unity. As Peace Trees are created internationally and Peace Tree Day is celebrated around the world, photos of the diverse trees and Peace Tree Day celebrations should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org, and they will be posted on the website at www.sandalwoodproductions.com/peacetree. We hope to soon see the variety of peaces trees created around the world and the messages of peace from our children. If our children grow up with an understanding and appreciation of all our vibrant cultures and faiths, we can one day hope for a world of peace and respect for all people.
Click the link to learn how to make a Peace Tree at Home.
How to Make Your Own Peace Tree at Home
Decorations for the Peace Tree
There are many hand made decorations from all our different cultures and faiths that you can make for your Peace Tree.
But first, learn how to make a paper crane by visiting:
Make sure you have a square sheet of paper before you begin to make your crane.
Now here are some handmade symbols from different cultures and faiths that you can make for your Peace Tree. All you need is some colourful construction paper, glue and scissors. What can you make from your culture or faith for your Peace Tree?
a) Origami Doll
b) Star of David
c) Peace Symbol
d) Diya for Diwali
e) Chinese Lantern
g) Paper Crane
h) Kwanzaa Lamp
i) Indian Elephant
For Grades 1 and 2 here are some handouts you can colour.
Colour for Diwali:
Great mehndi designs to use for mehndi hand decorations:
See Peace Tree Growing Around the World at...
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