Tapestry of Faith: Love Surrounds Us: A Program on the UU Principles and Beloved Community for Grades K-1

Activity 1: Story, The Great Kapok Tree, A Tale of the Amazon Rain Forest

Activity time: 10 minutes

"The Great Kapok Tree" Illustration by Nancy Meshkoff

Download a coloring sheet (PDF) for children to use before, during, or after the story "The Great Kapok Tree."

Materials for Activity

Preparation for Activity

  • Read the story and prepare to tell it to the group.
  • Optional: Download, print, and copy the coloring sheet (PDF). Place the coloring sheets and crayons where children can use them when invited but will not be distracted beforehand.

Description of Activity

This story is about how a young man learned how much a whole forest depended on just one tree.

Gather the children to hear a story. Tell them you will read a story about a rainforest. Explain that the Amazon is a huge rainforest in South America. Point it out on the map. Show where South America is in relation to where you live. Say that the Amazon rainforest is the largest rainforest in the world.

Read or tell the story. Then, process with these questions:

  • Why did the young man decide not to cut down the tree?
  • What made him change his mind?
  • Do you think the man will go off now and cut down a different tree? Why or why not?
  • Have you ever changed your mind about doing something because you realized how it would affect other people or things? Explain what happened.