Beacon Lesson Plan Library

Grandparents' Day Celebration

Melanie Henderson
Bay District Schools


Before Grandparents' Day Celebration, students make a family tree that dates back to their grandparents. They identify names, places, and particular customs and traditions of their family as well.


The student writes questions and observations about familiar topics, stories, or new experiences.

The student uses knowledge and experience to tell about experiences or to write for familiar occasions, audiences, and purposes.

The student retells specific details of information heard, including sequence of events.

The student knows a family history through two or three generations (e.g., customs, beliefs, and traditions of ancestors and their homelands).


-Notebook for homework
-List of information to investigate at home (see Procedures)
-Construction paper
-Dried leaves
-Markers or crayons


1. Put information listed as homework in a format that students can take home.
2. Prepare a homework notebook for students to record their findings.
3. Gather a bunch of fallen leaves and keep them dry.


-Announce to students that we will soon be celebrating Grandparents' Day (celebrated the second Sunday in September). In order for us to learn more about each other, we need to understand a little about ourselves and where we come from.

--For the next week, I want you to do some research at home about your family.
You need to ask questions to find out and record the following information about your family in your homework notebook:
Can you...
1. Name all your brother and sisters?
2. Name where they were born?
3. Name your mom and Dad (first and last names)?
4. Name where your mom and dad were born?
5. Name your grandparents on your mom's side?
6. Name where they were born?
7. Name grandparents on your dad's side?
8. Name where they were born?
9. Name one custom or tradition you do from your mom's side of the family?
10. Name a custom or tradition you do from your dad's side of the family?
-Add additional questions you want to ask.
-This can be completed through conversations with the people, Internet conversations, or looking through a family history book or even photo albums.-

-After a week of homework to compile the information, students make a family tree on construction paper following the directions listed.
1. First draw a tree trunk. Write your parent's names on the trunk.
2. Draw four roots coming down from the tree trunk. On each root, write the name of one grandparent.
3. At the top of the tree trunk start drawing out branches. Put your name and your brothers and sisters names on each branch (one name per branch).
4. Use markers or crayons to decorate the rest of the picture.
5. Use glue to glue down colored leaves on your branches.

-After each student has completed a tree, share it with the class. Display them around the room for students to look at.

-Journal entry: What did you learn about your family from this investigation? Did you learn anything new? Name three things you like about your family. Have students answer this in their journals.


This activity will be assessed by students' notebook answers and their Family Tree projects. Notebooks will be checked to see if they actually found the answers. I will collect and read these. The projects will be graded to see if the information they provide on the tree is the same as in their notebooks. Check for the following criteria:

The student
-knows their family history through three generations.
-knows customs or traditions of their ancestors.
-writes questions or observations about their family.
-tells about the information they learned.
(Students will be allowed to make up the assignment if they do not complete it.)


-Have a Grandparents' Day Celebration. Invite all grandparents and families to school for a picnic lunch.
-Invite grandparents to come in and talk to the class about themselves and what life was like for them when they were growing up (a couple each day).
-Have students share their customs/traditions with the class by having them bring in food, music, or clothing, etc.
Return to the Beacon Lesson Plan Library.