The Giving Tree
by Shel Silverstein
A little boy makes a playground of a great, leafy apple tree, and the tree loves him for it. The little boy is happy, and so the tree is happy. Soon the little boy grows, and grows away from his tree. At each new stage of his life the boy comes back, and the tree, always delighted to see him again, invites him to play around her like he used to and be happy. But each time, the once little boy has a different idea of what will make him happy, and asks the tree first for her apples, then her branches, and finally her trunk. The tree gives these things to the boy, happy to see him happy. As an old man, the boy comes back – by now the tree is just a stump, with nothing left to give. The boy is happy simply to have a place to sit and rest, and so boy and tree reclaim (though in a different way) the joy they shared when they were younger.
The ending makes for an interesting, open interpretation, and still very beautiful. Children of all ages will enjoy this classic story.
~ Susan Chodakiewitz is the Founder of Booksicals, Encouraging Reading Through the Arts and the author of the book
Too Many Visitors for One Little House ~