DIY Teacher Gift: Student Tree

The end of the school year is fast approaching (I know!) which always makes me start thinking of an appropriate gift for my children’s teachers to thank them for all they have done throughout the year.


This lovely student tree project is a trash-to-treasure keepsake that your child’s teacher will treasure for many years to come. My son’s teacher has hers hanging proudly on her classroom wall.



  • Paper leaves in different colours and various shapes – cut these out of plain coloured paper
  • Artists’ canvas (our canvas was 50 cm x 60 cm but you can use any size you like)
  • Paper tree (check local craft stores for a large stencil, download a print or hand draw a tree)
  • Glue dots (available from craft stores and many $2 shops)
  • Black Sharpie marker


Step 1: Ask for a copy of your child’s classroom list from your school. If the school is unable to give out the full list, request first names only.

Step 2: Prepare your canvas with your tree design (see notes in ‘Supplies’ above)

Step 3: Cut out paper leaves. You can trace and cut each one, or use an electronic cutter.

Step 4: Write the names of the students on each leaf. We color-coded the tree, writing our 2013 class on yellow leaves and leaving blank blue and grey leaves for upcoming years.

Step 5: Use glue dots to randomly stick the leaves on the tree. We used glue dots that could be repositioned; however, you can use permanent glue dots, as well.



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