Create a tree, leaves, and blossoms to help you focus on what makes you feel grateful and proud.
What you’ll need: A brown paper bag, scissors, paper or card, glue stick, pens/pencils
What’s it for?
This activity focuses on thinking about the positive things in your life, and areas where you feel you have grown. Identifying these positive areas can help you to become more resilient and can boost your emotional wellbeing.
Notice how you’re feeling right now. Close your eyes and notice what’s going on inside your mind and body.
How are you feeling?
What are you thinking?
How does your body feel?
To make your tree, lay your paper bag flat on the table (so that the bottom of the bag is folded flat too) and cut off any handles
Carefully cut narrow strips in the paper from top to bottom, starting at the top of the bag and cutting until you are just above the folded bottom of the bag
When you have cut all the strips, unfold the base of the bag to stand it up and squeeze your fist around the bag to gather the strips and create a 'tree trunk' above the flat base
To make your branches, carefully twist each of the strips of paper so that they become stiff and stick out at various angles
You should now have a tree shape! If it is a bit wobbly, you could glue the base to a thicker piece of paper or card
At the moment your tree has no leaves or flowers, like a tree in winter. To make flowers or leaves, draw and cut out shapes from the sheet of paper you have. You can colour them in if you'd like to.
On the back of your flowers and leaves, write down words to remind you of the people and things that make you feel grateful (ex. "my scooter", "my cat", "my auntie"). You could also write down things you are proud of (ex. "drawing", "trying hard at maths"), or the names of important people in your life (such as friends or family).
Glue your leaves and flowers to the branches of your tree. You could cut out some extra flowers or leaves and keep them blank, and then add them to the tree when something good happens you want to remember.
When you have finished, choose where you would like to display your tree to remind yourself of these positive experiences and memories.
Extra Activity: If you have more than one bag, why not make a tree for one of the special people you thought about while creating your tree? You could use the flowers and leaves to write down the things that make them important to you.
When you’ve finished, spend a moment reflecting on the activity and ask yourself the following questions:
How did it feel to reflect on these positive experiences and memories from your life?
Why do you think it can be useful to take time to identify these positive things?
When might it be helpful to look at your tree and read the flowers and leaves you have created?
What did you identify as making you feel proud? What makes you feel proud of this trait? Was there a time when this was a difficult thing for you?
Is there anyone else you would like to show your tree to? How do you think they will feel when you share it?
This activity helps us to remember the positive things in our life that we are grateful for and make us feel proud. These positive aspects of our lives can help us develop emotional wellbeing and resilience to help us manage times that feel more difficult.
Take a moment to notice how you are feeling at the end of this activity. Did you discover anything surprising? What can you take away to make you feel better about yourself from this activity?
If you would like to, share something about your experience with this activity with someone you live with! Ask the person who looks after you to send us an email if you have any questions or comments about the activity, or would like to send us any pictures (firstname.lastname@example.org). Don't forget to subscribe for more fun CAT activities!
Created by Heather Dingle © March 2021
Creative Arts Used: Art
Psychological Areas Explored: Resilience, Emotional Wellbeing and Self-Esteem
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These activities could be done by children of all ages, but some may need the support of their parent or carer to read the instructions or complete the activity safely.
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