You Won’t Be-leaf These World Forest Day Lessons
The Classroom

You Won’t Be-leaf These World Forest Day Lessons

Newsela Editorial
Mar 7, 2024

In 2012, the United Nations declared March 21 World Forest Day, or International Day of Forests, to remind us of the key resources they provide and that we should protect them if we want to keep these resources in the future. Teach your students about the benefits of forest health with our curated resources, texts, and activities all about trees!

Teach the benefits of World Forest Day

There are plenty of ways you can add more forest content to your lesson plans. Use Newsela’s science resources to add more unbe-leaf-able content and activities to your World Forest Day lessons:

Learn more about World Forest Day

The United Nations created World Forest Day to help people understand the way urbanization, deforestation, and climate change affect forests around the world. Help students explore the ways humans have disrupted the world’s forests and what we can do to fix these problems:

  • Watch videos about the different types of forests, like rainforests and deciduous forests.

  • Introduce students to a type of underwater forest, the kelp forest.

  • Teach about different types of environmental activist topics that affect forests, such as greenhouse gas emissions and deforestation.

Discover the benefits of forest bathing

Have your students ever heard of forest bathing? Learn about one journalist’s experience with the process. Extend the lesson and have students show what they learned and answer writing prompts like:

  • How can forest bathing help reduce stress and anxiety?

  • How can spending time in nature affect our relationship with technology?

  • What are some other ways spending time in nature can affect mental and physical health?

Take a forest virtual field trip

Take your students around the world without ever leaving the classroom! Take a virtual field trip through a Finnish forest to learn more about the area as a habitat. During the trip, engage students in activities like:

  • Using a topographical map of Europe to locate Finland and the location of your forest field trip.

  • Creating a printable journal to record students’ observations during the field trip.

  • Exploring the interactive forest paths to learn more about how forests sustain life, how they grow, and how they adapt to new trends in the environment

Have students read about nature

Go beyond science and bring World Forest Day into your ELA classroom with fiction and nonfiction resources:

Nature novel and book studies

World Forest Day is a great opportunity to introduce students to books and novels that feature forests as a setting (or even a secondary character!). Newsela ELA’s novel and book studies for each grade band give students the background knowledge and context to better understand each text:

Articles about forests and trees

Bring more informational texts into your ELA classroom with nature articles. Encourage students to practice literacy skills while exploring topics like:

  • Why low amounts of sunlight are changing the colors of the leaves on plants in the rainforest from green to blue.

  • What the threat of pollution, mining, and oil drilling is doing to our National Parks.

  • How Women activists are using their voices to save more trees.

Famous Poets: Robert Frost

Poet Robert Frost is best known for his nature poems, especially those that depicted the landscape of New England, which includes many trees and forests. See nature through his eyes by encouraging students to read poems like:

  • Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening

  • The Road Not Taken

  • Putting in the Seed

  • Gathering Leaves

Save the trees with virtual assessment activities

Save some trees this World Forest Day and assign your students interactive Formative activities and assessments right on their devices! Plus, get real-time data and insights to check their comprehension and other skills for every lesson. It’s as easy as clicking a button. Log in to your Newsela account today and open the activities panel on any article to get started. And if you’re not a Newsela user yet, create your account to get started!

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