The Giving Tree The Giving Tree question


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Giving Tree= for what age?
Laura Guilbault Laura Jan 20, 2015 11:56AM
Who do you think this book is meant for? Should this be for kids only?



Well, it's generally read to kids. But I find that creepy because it symbolizes an ungrateful brat child taking advantage of his parents. Kids don't even realize that's it's totally stereotyping them. So, I don't really think anybody should read it, but if anyone should, it's bitter parents.

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Clara Lewis The boy didn't have any parents. A tree is climbed on by most kids if they can. Most kids when they grow up would never return and see the tree again. ...more
Feb 07, 2015 07:29AM

I prefer to think all ages, but... I would say in reality... probably... from when you first learn to read (depends on when you first learn to read)
to when you about 6, maybe seven if you haven't read it already. So, i love it and i'm ten.


I find it very strange that there are so many comments opting for avoiding reading this because of the negative feelings it dredges up or because of the presumed negative characterization intended by the author. I've read this many times, to myself at various ages, to children of various ages, socioeconomic backgrounds, and character. I have yet encountered a negative response - until now, in this discussion. I believe that it is the uncomfortable that really has an impact. The Giving Tree definitely makes the reader uncomfortable - sad, guilty, ashamed, disgusted - but that is what makes it so memorable. The moral is simple - one that should be reinforced by our parenting, our teaching, and by our consistent community standards; Give all you can afford, take only what you need.

Here the tree gave more than what it could afford, and the boy took more than he needed. In the end both boy and tree were at fault for the sorrow, loneliness, and deficit they "achieved" through their senseless actions that they each based in love for one another.

I love the book, it's lovely for all ages.


i think this is primarily for children who have just turned 11 :)

given the author's history as a poet, i suspect his topic was aimed at kids with the idea that everyone would benefit and be interested. having said that, this book is so sad to me that i can't bear to read it and haven't since i was 9 or 10 or so.


People assume this is a children's book, but I disagree. It has a powerful message, and anyone of any age can learn from the Giving Tree.


the tree is very selfless, and the dude is selfish. he kinda destroyed the tree. interesting moral


Given the other books by this author, I've never thought that he meant it to be taken as a model of generosity or sweetness. I think it's dark humor and an acknowledgment of our human foibles. This is the guy who wrote Uncle Shelby's ABZ Book, a totally subversive (and hysterical) sendup of children's books and our ideas of sweet innocent childhood.


Any book is for any age. It is a story and stories are for everyone. If you mean what reading level it is it really depends on the child but should be at least five and up.


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