TreEAB Week 1, Lesson 1: Why trees matter


Activity Description: 

At the end of this mini-unit, students will understand all the ecosystems services and value trees provide to humans every day. Students will know the biological processes of trees and the importance of native trees for providing habitat. Finally, they will acknowledge the significance trees add to our surroundings and be able to share everything they learn with others.

This matters for all students because if they are not given the opportunity to appreciate nature while young, it may be too late. Students must know that there is much more to trees then what meets the eye. Enlightening kids to all trees have to offer while still impressionable, will forever change their outlook. They will then have the power to be environmental stewards of the future.


Students will be able to recognize that trees are needed in our daily lives by the products and value that they provide. Students will be able to express how humans are connected to nature through trees. 

Educational Standards: 

Life Sciences

Benchmark C: Explain how energy entering the ecosystems as sunlight supports the life of organisms through photosynthesis and the transfer of energy through the interactions of organisms and the environment. 

6th Grade – 8. Describe how organisms may interact with one another. 

7th Grade – 2. Investigate how organisms or populations may interact with one another through symbiotic relationships and how some species have become so adapted to each other that neither could survive without the other (e.g., predator-prey, parasitism, mutualism and commensalism). 

Physical Sciences 

Benchmark C: Describe renewable and nonrenewable sources of energy (e.g., solar, wind, fossil fuels, biomass, hydroelectricity, geothermal and nuclear energy) and the management of these sources. 

6th Grade – 8. Describe how renewable and nonrenewable energy resources can be managed (e.g., fossil fuels, trees and water). 

Science & Technology 

Benchmark A: Give examples of how technological advances, influenced by scientific knowledge, affect the quality of life. 

6th Grade – 2. Explain how decisions about the use of products and systems can result in desirable or undesirable consequences (e.g., social and environmental). 

  • Directions posted
  • Lesson Packet 
  • Time device 
  • Branch 
  • Pencil 
  • LCD Projector/Overhead 
  • Baseball 
  • Sponge (synthetic, not natural) 
  • Candy bar w/ almonds 
  • Newspaper 
  • Toothpicks 
  • Timer/ watch/clock 
  • 5 Pictures of trees in a landscape 
  • A-B-C cards 
  • Exit Tickets
  • Buckeye
One Class Period
The Ohio State University Extension and USDA Forest Service,