Green Thumb Party
Plants are important to our environment for air quality and for beauty. Your family can hold a Green Thumb Party with friends or neighbors. This hands-on project teaches children what it means to be “green” and to be kind to others. Invite your party guests to share in creating gifts that keep on giving. They plant flowers or herbs in clay pots and give the gifts to seniors at a retirement community or care facility.
Plants clean the air we breathe. One tree, in its average 50-year lifetime, can clean up $62,000 of air pollution.
Here’s Your Project:
Plant herbs or flowers in clay pots to give to seniors.
- Small clay pots with saucers
- Potting soil
- Spoons for shoveling soil
- Variety of small plants (flowers and/or herbs)
- Ribbon and/or paints to decorate the clay pots
- Optional: treats with a flower theme (decorated cupcakes)
How to Do It!
- Invite friends over for a Green Thumb Party. Tell your guests that they will be making green gifts for local seniors. Contact the retirement community in advance to arrange the visit. Plan the transportation to the retirement home or care facility.
- On the day of the party:Set out the supplies outside or on newspaper.
- Each child may decorate a clay pot with paints and/or ribbon.
- For each pot, spoon soil into the clay pot until it is half full.
- Put a small plant in the pot.
- Add soil to cover the roots and nearly fill the pot.
- Add water.
- When all of the plants are ready, deliver the decorated pots to the retirement community.
Optional: Bring decorated treats for the seniors and party guests.
Before your service project, read one of the suggested books or our environmental fact sheet. Then discuss the following questions to talk about environmental issues. Discussing the issue is the key to helping your children develop empathy and compassion for the people affected by the community and world issue they are addressing. You also want to be clear about what the goals and expectations are. Here are questions to guide your discussion:
- How do you feel about plants and trees? How does planting flowers help the environment?
- What is your favorite thing about nature? Do you enjoy walking in the park? Climbing trees? Swimming in lakes or the ocean? Watching the seasons change?
- What are more ways in which you think you could get your neighbors, classmates, or other community members to help the environment with you?
- What might be tough or challenging about our project?
- What are everyone’s jobs during the project? What do we each have to do?
After your volunteer project, it is important to reflect on the experience. You can use the reflection questions to guide discussion or do the Whip Around reflection activity:
- How did our project help people?
- How did our project help the environment?
- Did our family learn anything or make any new friends?
- How did our feelings about seniors or plants change?
- What worked well about our project?
- What can we do better next time?
- What is our next service project?