Life Skills

Cadette Trees Badge Activity


Design A Tree House

Think like an architect and create a unique design for the perfect tree house.

Activity Details

Time Needed: 45-60 minutes

Materials needed:

  • A sheet of plain white paper
  • A pencil
  • A ruler or straight edge
  • Colored pencils or markers (optional)
  • Access to the internet from a computer or mobile phone

Setup: To know trees is to love them. Even if you have few trees in your neighborhood, you’ll still be able to take part in this activity. 

Activity: Check out the basics of architectural drawings, and draft a plan for your dream tree house. It can be simple or complex—it’s up to you. Then present your plans to friends or family members to see if they’d also like living there.

Follow the steps below:

  1.   Go online and search for treehouse building videos. Find one that talks about how different kinds       of trees can influence the design of a treehouse. 

  2.  Think about the three best kinds of “treehouse trees”, and select a tree you’d want to design a  treehouse out of. Or take five minutes to go outside and locate a tree in your yard or  neighborhood with an adult. Take a picture of it, if possible, or commit it to memory so you can  draw it when you get home.

  3.  Once you have a tree in mind, make a simple drawing of it on a plain piece of paper.  Remember: the drawing can be simple or complex, just as the instructor in the video shared.

  4.  Now let’s get your creative energy going as you go back online and find another video that talks  about how a professional architect would draw or design a treehouse. Learn the video to learn the  basics about architectural drawing .Think about how you’ll draw the house on your tree as you  watch the video.

  5.   Finally it’s time to draw your tree house! As you draw, ask    yourself some design questions. For   example:

  • How will you get into the tree house? (A ladder, swinging bridge, or zip line?)

  • What special features will your house have? (Windows, a place for hammocks, a deck, or a skylight?)

  • How would someone use the treehouse you’ve designed? (Is it for little kids, adults, or the whole family?)

  • Do you want to design the house for overnight stays or just a hangout spot?

Troop Leaders:  The instructions for all badge steps are available free of charge in your  Girl Scout Volunteer Toolkit.

Girl Scouts at Home activities have been adapted from existing Girl Scout programming and optimized for use at home during a period of social distancing.

Adapted from Step 1 of the Cadette Trees Badge. Purchase The Cadette Girl’s Guide to Girl Scouting to complete all requirements and earn the badge