Project Linus is an organization that provides comfort to children who are sick and in the hospital through collecting blankets from “blanketeers.” Students act as “blanketeers” by creating blankets to donate through Project Linus. Students are encouraged to think about how they would feel if they were sick and what types of comfort they seek in those situations. Students will write notes and make “thinking of you” cards to send with the blankets. Parent volunteers can provide assistance during this lesson.
Students will work together to create blankets for sick children through Project Linus.
Students will know what caring means and will be able to apply it.
Students will participate in meaningful moral action.
Students will feel good about helping others.
2 pieces of fleece fabric (1 ½ -2 yards each, but should be equal)
Book to open discussion about caring and being sick (i.e., Franklin Goes to the Hospital by Paulette Bourgeois [Scholastic Paperbacks, 2000], Curious George Goes to the Hospital by H.A. Rey and Margaret Rey [H.M.H. Books, 1966], or Harry Goes to the Hospital: A Story for Children About What It’s Like to be in the Hospital by Howard J. Bennett [Magination Press, 2008])
The teacher will read books to open discussion with the class about what it means to be sick. Students will think of a time they were sick and the types of things that made them feel better. The teacher will lead the discussion toward ways others can help when they are feeling sick or in the hospital.
Conversation will move toward being comfortable and having something or someone to make them feel cared for.
Students will discuss what caring means.
The teacher will introduce Project Linus and what the organization does for kids who are sick.
The teacher will explain and demonstrate how to create no-sew fleece blankets. Students will work together in small groups to make the no-sew fleece blankets. (Depending on the grade level and skills, some fleece fabric may need to be cut ahead of time. Another option is to do the activity with a buddy class who can help with the more difficult tasks.)
**See attached directions for No Sew Fleece Blanket.
Lay the two pieces of fleece on top of each other with wrong side together (if applicable).
Trim the selvage edges from the two pieces of fleece at the same time to keep them together.
Cut a four-inch square out of each corner of the fleece.
Make one-inch cuts all along the borders of each side of the fleece. Using a yardstick to lay across the side helps to make cuts uniform.
Make all the cuts around all four sides before starting to tie things off. Make sure the fabric is laying perfectly flat while cutting.
Loop the strands of both fabrics together – keeping the two strands together, raise them up and then bring them back through the circle, from the back to the front. Manipulate the strands to tie a firm but not tight “knot.”
Students will participate in a reflection activity after completing the blankets. This could be a class meeting discussing what the students learned from the activity or one thing they could take away from it. Exit slips could also be used as a reflection activity. Discussion will include which character traits were used throughout the lesson.
Teachers will be able to determine if the objectives have been met by listening to feedback given in the reflection class meeting or reading exit slips the students completed.
Students will complete a journal entry (either to a writing or drawing prompt).
Extensions and Adaptations
Students may choose to write more than one “Thinking of You” note or card.
Students may create another way to show caring to children who are sick or in the hospital.
Students may work with a buddy to write their letter or make their card.
Students may use peer editing of their letter.