Thankful Tree

Teach kids the meaning of Thanksgiving by creating this paper gratitude tree with them. Use it as a table centerpiece or as a lovely Thanksgiving decoration.
Thankful Tree craft


  • Brown card stock (medium to heavy weight)
  • Paper in fall colors (red, yellow, orange, brown)
  • Scissors
  • Markers
  • Glue stick

Safety Tips

  • Watch out for this sign Ask for an adult's help.. It means adult help is needed for the particular step.


Step 1 Thankful Tree craft 1. Choose from any of these large tree trunk templates. Print out four copies of your chosen template on brown A4 or Letter size card stock.
Step 2 Thankful Tree craft 2. The tree trunk template consists of a top (with branches) and a bottom. Cut out both pieces. Similarly cut out the other three copies you printed out so that you come up with a total of four tree trunks.
Step 3 Thankful Tree craft 3. Glue the top of each tree trunk onto the tab area of the bottom piece.
Step 4 Thankful Tree craft Ask for an adult's help.4. This step is necessary if you print out the trees on heavy card stock. Scoring along the line makes folding a lot easier. Find a scoring tool such as a blunt plastic knife or a spent ballpoint pen. Place the edge of a ruler on the tree's middle line. With the ruler to guide the tool, score along the entire line. Do not score too hard as this may tear the paper. Do this for all the trees.
Step 5 Thankful Tree craft 5. Fold each tree along the middle line.
Step 6a Thankful Tree craft 6. Glue two trees together along one half side, aligning them along the edges.
Step 6b Thankful Tree craft Similarly glue the two remaining trees together.
Step 7 Thankful Tree craft 7. Glue both paper tree pairs together, aligning them along the edges. Your three-dimensional paper tree should be able to stand on a flat surface.
Step 8a Thankful Tree craft 8. Cut out a leaf by folding paper in half and cutting half-a-leaf shape along the folded edge. Unfold to reveal the leaf. Make about 20 fall leaves from yellow, orange, red, and brown paper. You can go with the same shape for all the leaves or cut a variety of leaf shapes. Estimate the size of the leaves to match the size of the tree.
Step 8b Thankful Tree craft We also have these leaf sets that you can print out and cut. The smallest leaves in each set (first page of the oval-shaped leaves, heart-shaped leaves, star-shaped leaves, maples leaves, and oak leaves) are just about the right size for our tree trunk.
Step 9 Thankful Tree craft 9. Write thankful thoughts on the leaves.
Step 10 Thankful Tree craft 10. Glue the leaves onto the branches of your tree. This thankful tree is a great activity for a meaningful Thanksgiving. Use the tree as a table centerpiece or as a colorful Thanksgiving décor.

More Ideas

Thankful Tree Picture An easier variant of this craft is to make a Thanksgiving tree picture instead of a three-dimensional tree. Print out any of the tree trunk templates on brown card stock. Cut out the tree trunk and glue onto a sheet of 12" x 18" construction paper. Cut out paper leaves, write thankful thoughts on them and glue onto the tree branches on your picture.