National Poinsettia Day was passed in the United States Congress to “mark the death of Joel Roberts Poinsett, who is credited with introducing the native Mexican plant to the United States.”
Apparently, during the 14th through 16th centuries the Aztecs used the sap from the poinsettia plant to control fevers, and the leaves were soaked to produce a red dye.
To learn more about the beautiful poinsettia check out these websites:
Today, this beautiful plant is often seen during holiday season and is enjoyed by all. All three activity bursts below focus on creating many versions of this lovely plant. Enjoy!
It’s time to make pretty poinsettias! Regardless of what holidays your students may celebrate, the beautiful poinsettia can adorn any classroom, school or home.
Use your imagination to create these beauties. Think about felt, tissue paper, coffee filters, paper plates, pipe cleaners, buttons, beads and seeds!
If you are stuck, here is a great site to help your K-2 students beautify their surroundings!
It’s time to make a bouquet of poinsettias to give to someone special. Share the history above and then challenge your students to make their own special bouquet of poinsettias. Provide coloured paper of various kinds, felt or other red and green material scraps, scissors, glue, beads, seeds, buttons, pipe cleaners, paint, ribbon and anything else you may have in your craft supplies. Share the results and ask the students who they are going to honour with their bouquet.
Share the brief history of the poinsettia above. Explain that the poinsettia is often seen during the holiday season and it is used as storefront and home decorations because of its vibrant colours and shapes. The leaves of the poinsettia are called bracts and they come in many colours: pure white, pink, red, purple, yellow, salmon and orange. Some of the bracts are marbled or spotted with a variety of these colours.
Work in groups to create “designer” poinsettias, by incorporating all of the different bracts into lovely wreaths. Provide coloured paper of various kinds, felt or other material scraps, scissors, glue, beads, seeds, buttons, pipe cleaners, paint, ribbon and anything else you may have in your craft supplies. Share the results with the class and consider delivering some of the wreaths to community residences or stores.