Show the Love


We are working with the Climate Coalition on their Show the Love campaign in February. As part of this, we are producing a green heart resource with them, upon which you can write your tree story. Then dress a tree with the hearts and make a stand against climate change.

Send us back your story hearts for them to count towards the Charter for Trees, Woods and People. Learn more on the Show the Love page on our website. We are going to make a massive tree shape with all of the hearts which are returned. Schools who return more than 100 hearts will get a free photo frame with a photo of the Charter tree.


Free Tree Dressing Activity Pack!

Tree Dressing Day was at the end of The Tree Council’s National Tree Week. The 3rd December this year was Tree Dressing Day, and lots of people decorated their trees in celebration of what they do for us. We still have lots of free resource packs left if you want one! Why not use the leaf templates to collect Tree Charter stories?tree-dressing-resource-2

Our free resource pack contains instructions, activities and lots of leaf templates which you can decorate and write your tree stories on. Then you hang them on a tree to ‘re-leaf’ a winter tree. For a free hard copy of the resource pack, please email with your name, postal address, details of the event where you will use it and a contact number. Each pack has 100 leaf templates.

You can also print off your own pack with our downloadable version below.




Jackie Morris Tree Champions

Tree Charter Champions illustration by acclaimed children’s author and illustrator Jackie Morris, based on winning ideas from the Woodland Trust Tree Charter Schools Challenge.

We live in a landscape shaped by the events of the past. The ancient trees and mature woods across our landscape exist because they were planted, or allowed to grow, by generations before ours. The next generation and all those that follow will feel the impact of the choices made today.

The Charter for Trees, Woods and People will be a gift to future generations – but also a challenge. They will benefit from the trees and woods that are protected and planted now, but will also become their guardians.

It is vital that young people today help define the charter, and understand its importance. We are at a crisis point for trees and woods, but it is not enough to act now to avoid losing what we have. We must bring trees and people closer together so that such a crisis is never reached again.

The dual challenge to parents, educators and youth leaders:

  1. Help young people to learn about the value of trees and woods, and the fun ways they can make them part of their lives
  2. Ensure young people are part of the call for a charter by sharing their own tree stories, and are aware of their role as Tree Charter Champions in the future.

Fox by Jackie Morris

A lost connection

For many adults, weekends and holidays as a child were all about getting outside, climbing trees, getting gloriously caked in mud, and discovering things about yourself as well as the natural world. A stick could be a sword, a magic wand, a witch’s broomstick, or a way to entertain the family dog. A tree was a climbing frame, a hiding place, a castle, or a place to marvel at strange insects and the fascinating textures and colours of nature. Nowadays, young people are spending less and less time outside. The impact of this may take years to be fully understood, but there is little doubt that children are missing out on health benefits, character-building experiences of free play, and first-hand experience of the wonders of nature.

In a recent poll by YouGov, commissioned by The Wildlife Trust, it emerged that while 91% of parents think that having access to nature and wildlife is important for children in general, 78% were concerned that children don’t spend enough time interacting with nature and wildlife. This is backed up by the fact that over a quarter (27%) of children aged 8-15 had never played outside by themselves, beyond their house or garden – and 37% hadn’t done this in the past 6 months.


Tree story exercise from The Grange Primary School, LeicestershireTree stories

We want tree stories from people of all ages to help us prove that people in the UK love the trees in their lives, and to help us create a charter that protects what people value most about the trees and woods around them.

An easy, fun way for young people to be a part of the call for a Tree Charter is to share a story about an experience of a tree or wood. This is a great thing to do after an outdoor activity, helping them reflect on what they enjoyed about their time with trees, and to share it with their family and friends.

Stories can be submitted online, or sent in by post or emailed. Email to request a pack of origami templates or mask activity sheets, or simply support the young people to write their story on paper, a postcard, or a worksheet of your own design. We are happy to receive photos of handwritten stories by email. Please include your school name and address (if applicable), and confirm the ages of the young people. Anonymous stories are welcome, but please specify the age of the young people.
Tree Charter Stories
The Woodland Trust
Kempton Way, Grantham
Lincolnshire NG31 6LL


Tree Charter Lesson Plan

This lesson plan can be used by anyone who wants to use it! Please do adapt it to suit your own needs if necessary. It teaches children why trees are important and some of the threats to trees and woods. Activities include collecting stories for the Charter using the origami (details below) and writing tree haikus! It can be used with upper KS1 and lower KS2.


Tree Charter Story Collecting Resources

Tree Dressing Day

Tree Dressing Day is at the end of The Tree Council’s National Tree Week. It is a week of special events for everyone to celebrate the trees in their lives. This year, National Tree Week is the 26th November- 4th December. The 3rd December this year is Tree Dressing Day, where people decorate their trees. We have a free resource pack for Tree Dressing Day this year! You can hold an event at any time during National Tree Week.tree-dressing-resource-2

Our free resource pack contains instructions, activities and lots of leaf templates which you can decorate and write your tree stories on. Then you hang them on a tree to ‘re-leaf’ a winter tree. For a free hard copy of the resource pack, please email with your name, postal address, details of the event where you will use it and a contact number. Each pack has 100 leaf templates.

You can also print off your own pack with our downloadable version below.


We want to hear all about your Tree Dressing Day activities! Why not send us a picture using #TreeCharter on social media, or email



These fun, simple-to-use resources are available for free to parents, schools and youth clubs. Email your delivery address and required numbers to

Origami templates: Fun origami templates for trees, foxes and owls, with space on the back for a tree story.

Owl mask story collection sheets: A story worksheet with a pop-out owl mask template to colour in and keep.

Squirrel by Jackie Morris

Exclusive Short story from Jackie Morris!
Heartwood is an exclusive short story by Charter Champion, renowned children’s author and illustrator Jackie Morris. Read online or download the pdf version for your e-reader.

Ideas and Resources for Families

Wild Network Wild Time Activities
Ideas for easy, fun activities to make it easy to swap screen time for wild time.
The Wild Network aims to champion, support and increase nature connection by encouraging free-range, outdoor play in children and young people (0-18yrs).

Nature Detectives
Woods are the world’s best playgrounds, so pull on your wellies, grab your magnifying glass and get set to explore with Nature Detectives membership, from The Woodland Trust!
Weekly challenges for families are posted on the Nature Detectives Facebook page.

Wildlife Watch
Find your local Wildlife Trust and contact them for details of how to join, and activities and events near you.
The Wildlife Trusts run more than 240 regular nature clubs for children across the UK, from Nature Tots and Wildlife Watch groups, to junior volunteering groups and regular WildPlay sessions for the whole family. Make new friends, have a go at new and exciting outdoor activities and learn about how you can make a difference to wildlife.
Find a group near you and join in the fun! Find a Wildlife Trust nature reserve near you.


Ideas and Resources for Schools

Teaching Trees
The Royal Forestry Society’s (RFS) education programme for primary schools provides fun and engaging curriculum-linked activities to teach children to value trees for wildlife, for enjoyment and for timber.

Green Tree Schools Award
The Woodland Trust’s Green Tree Schools Award is free, fun and has fantastic activities to help your school celebrate woods and trees. Schools are rewarded for completing environmental projects and encouraging outdoor learning. It’s a fantastic way to enhance your school’s green credentials while inspiring youngsters about woods and trees.

Free Trees for Schools
The Woodland Trust sends out free trees to schools and community groups across the UK every March and November (to coincide with tree-planting season). They are ideal for gardening and nature clubs. They also help to improve your school grounds and encourage more wildlife to your local area.

Woodland Trust Curriculum Linked Resources
The Woodland Trust has developed a range of KS2 and KS3 curriculum-linked resources to help you teach your pupils about woods and trees. These quality materials can be used to support and inspire outdoor learning, as well as classroom-based lessons. They range from tree planting to natural crafts to the study of ancient trees. Subjects covered include maths, literacy and science.

Forest School
The philosophy of Forest Schools is to encourage and inspire individuals of any age through positive outdoor experiences in a woodland environment. Children of all ages learn about the natural environment, how to handle risks and most importantly to use their own initiative to solve problems and co-operate with others. Forest School programmes run throughout the year, for about 36 weeks, going to the woods in all weathers. Children use full sized tools, play, learn boundaries of behaviour; both physical and social, establish and grow in confidence, self-esteem and become self motivated. Find a local Forest School group and see what they can do for your school.

Wild Time for Schools
Wild Time for Schools is an easy-to-use, web-based tool, to help teachers take learning outside. You can use it any time you like, as many days as you like, whenever you like.
The Wild Network site gives you learning activities tagged against curriculum learning topics and key learning stages – all set out by time.  So, whether you want to try out an easy 10 minute activity for KS1, a one hour version or a whole day exploring data handling, writing, or investigating with KS2, there is something there for you.

myForest for Education
An easy-to-use and free online application from Sylva Foundation that enables any educator, or young person, to generate straightforward woodland management plans, maps and ecological impact assessments for woodland sites and school grounds.


Information and Statistics

Wildlife Trusts Every Child Wild report (pdf)

Wildlife Trusts guide to The Art of Getting Children Outdoors (pdf)

National Trust Natural Childhood Report (pdf)