The Wish Tree by Kyo Maclear – Read aloud activities and Lesson plan ideas

Kyo Maclear’s “The Wish Tree” is one of the most heartwarming read alouds you can use to supplement your winter holiday read aloud sessions. It is a story of belief and kindness that really helps create an atmosphere or magic and miracles in your classroom all while teach an important lesson.

The Wish Tree by Kyo Maclear Summary

The Wish Tree by Kyo Maclear book activities

In “The Wish Tree,” Charles embarks on a quest to find a magical tree that grants wishes. Charles sets out on a journey with his loyal friend and traveling companion Boggan, his red sled.  Along the way, Charles and Boggan meet animals that live in a winter forest: they are busy working on their preparations for the snowy season. Charles and Bogan show kindness and do their best to help the animals, but the wish tree is nowhere in sight. Exhausted from his adventure, Charles falls asleep, only to wake up to a winter miracle. The animals he encountered along the way have taken him to see the wish tree and share a joyous feast together. The road back home is truly magical and filled with a sense of wonder!  

The Wish Tree by Kyo Maclear Craft

The first idea following reading The Wish Tree by Kyo Maclear was a craft – to create our own wish tree. In my TPT resource, I have a template for writing a letter to tie to a tree. You can find the resource here, or just have your students write their wishes on slips of paper and place on a tree. You can draw the tree on a board or create one from brown packing or wrapping paper. For an extra holiday twist, decorate the tree with colorful paper or yarn.

The Wish Tree writing craft worksheet

The Wish Tree by Kyo Maclear – Learn more about winter animals

The Wish Tree is a perfect book to pair with non-fiction reading passages about winter animals. Some activity ideas I had are:

  • Prepare a list or flash cards with the pictures of animals. Discuss how they prepare for winter and how you can help. Use the text of the book for reference: e.g. help a beaver to gather birch.
  • For an animal encounter scavenger hunt, mix together pictures of winter animals from the story (beaver, bear, fox, deer) and other animals. Have students sort the animals and explain what makes the animals in the book ‘winter animals’.

For even more activities accompanied by low-prep ready to print worksheets, visit my TPT store here.

The Wish Tree by Kyo Maclear read aloud activities, lesson plan

The Wish Tree by Kyo Maclear – discussion questions and author’s message

The message of “The Wish Tree” is truly timeless: believe in what you are searching for, stay hopeful and be kind along the way, don’t give up and the good things will come. This book may look like a simple story, but you can really help unravel the deeper meaning with the help of holding a class discussion. Here are some discussion questions to add to your “The Wish Tree” lesson plan:

  • What did Charles want to find?
  • What challenges did he face on his journey?
  • Why do you think he didn’t give up and kept going?
  • How do you think Bogan supported Charles?
  • Do you think animals helped Charles to find the wish tree?
  • Why did the animals prepare a feast for Charles?
  • What did we learn about wishes?

Loved the activities in this post? My TPT resource is brimming with even more fun, engaging, differentiated low-prep activities ready to print and watch the smiles bloom.

What teachers are saying:

  • This resource was a huge help last month. Thank you so much for creating it!
  • Fun and sweet enrichment activities for a fun and sweet book. My students loved the story and these activities to enrich our lesson. Thank you.

Save time and watch your students dive deeper into the message of the wonderful story in “The Wish Tree” with activities they won’t want to put down!).

Ready to unleash the learning magic? Click HERE or the image below for link!

The Wish Tree by Kyo Maclear book activities - fun and engaging read aloud activities ideas for teachers

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