Encourage Peace for Animals With TeachKind’s Holiday Ornament Crafts

One of the many things that we love about humane education is that it’s so easy to take lessons and activities that you’re already doing with your students and add a compassionate twist to them. Many teachers create holiday ornaments with their students, so this year, why not make them extra-special by adding a message of kindness?

Make one—or all three—of these simple and cute ornaments with your students, and encourage them to give them as gifts to family and friends to spread holiday cheer and the message that animals are not ours to use.

‘Don’t Hunt’ Reindeer Ornament

Animals in the wild suffer terribly when they’re killed by hunters—chasing defenseless beings around their homes in order to shoot them and mount their heads on a wall is cruel. Tell students that they should never disturb or harm wild animals, and encourage them to learn more about deer and other animals at PETAKids.org. Here’s how to make a deer-themed ornament:

Materials for Each Student

1 clear plastic ornament with a removable top
Brown paper shreds
Glue
1 pair googly eyes
1 mini red, brown, or black pompom
2 brown pipe cleaners
Scissors
1 gold or black permanent marker
1 6-inch ribbon

Directions

  • Fill the ornament with the paper shreds. Secure the top on.
  • Make a face by gluing on the googly eyes and pompom “nose.” Hold until glue sets.
  • To create antlers, wrap one of the pipe cleaners around the top of the ornament so that the ends stick out on either side. Cut the other pipe cleaner into four pieces. Twist two of the pieces around each end of the first pipe cleaner.
  • Use the permanent marker to write the phrase “DON’T HUNT” on the ornament.
  • Attach the ribbon to the ornament top.

‘I’m ME, Not MEAT’ Pig Ornament

Pigs and other animals raised for food value their lives just as much as you and I value ours. They’re not “roasts,” “chops,” “bacon strips,” “sausage links,” or “hot dogs,” and they definitely don’t have any “spare” ribs. If people did the same things to dogs and cats that farmers and slaughterhouse workers do to animals raised for food, they could be prosecuted for cruelty and sent to jail. Encourage your students to pledge to go vegan. Here’s how to make an ornament celebrating pigs:

Materials for Each Student

1 pair pink felt triangle “ears,” roughly 1 inch in size
Glue
1 pink ornament
1 pink button with two holes
1 black permanent marker
1 6-inch ribbon

Directions

  • Apply glue to the base of the “ears.” Place on the ornament and hold until glue sets..
  • Glue on the button “nose.” Hold until glue sets.
  • Use the permanent marker to draw on two eyes. Let the ink dry.
  • Use the permanent marker to write the phrase “I’M ME, NOT MEAT” on the back of the ornament.
  • Attach the ribbon to the ornament top.

‘Let Them Be Free’ Orca Ornament

Can you imagine being separated from your family and forced to live the rest of your life in a concrete bathtub just for people’s entertainment? That’s exactly what happens to orcas and other animals who are held captive by SeaWorld and other marine parks. Life at SeaWorld is miserable for the animals imprisoned there. Urge your students to pledge never to support the cruel company. Here’s how to make an ornament highlighting the plight of orcas:

Materials for Each Student

1 clear plastic ornament with a removable top
Blue paper shreds
1 orca or dolphin cutout
1 pencil
1 black permanent marker
1 6-inch ribbon

Directions

  • Fill the ornament halfway with the blue filling.
  • Loosely roll up the orca cutout and insert it into the ornament, using the pencil to roll it open and position it near the front. Fill the rest of the ornament with the blue filling. Secure the top on.
  • Use the permanent marker to write the phrase “LET THEM BE FREE” on the ornament.
  • Attach the ribbon to the ornament top.

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind