Thanksgiving
Fun & Learning

 

 

 

 

Reading

A Thanksgiving Rebus Story  Fun for young children.
 

Thanksgiving Facts from Fact Monster
 

The Spirit of the Corn, an Iroquois Legend, adapted by Harriet Maxwell Converse

 

More Native American Legends

 

        An Old Fashioned Thanksgiving, by Louisa May Alcott

 

Lincoln's Thanksgiving Proclamation

 

 

 

The Great Turkey Race

Watch and listen to this fun Thanksgiving  picture book, narrated by Miss Portola.



 






Songs, Fingerplays, & Flannel Board

 


Five Little Turkeys

5 little turkeys standing by the door,
One waddled off, and then there were 4.
4 little turkeys under a tree,
One waddled off , and then there were 3.
3 little turkeys with nothing to do,
One waddled off, and then there were 2.
2 little turkeys sleeping in the sun,
One waddled off, and then there was 1.
One little turkey better run away,
Before Thanksgiving dinner, on Thanksgiving day.

 

   


 

Five Fat Turkeys

Five fat turkeys are we.
We spent all night in a tree.
When the cook came around,
We couldn’t be found
And that's why we're here you see!

 
   
  The Turkey Pokey

You put your right wing in, you put your right wing out,
You put your right wing in, and you gobble all about.
You do the turkey jerky and you turn yourself around,
That's what it's all about. Hey! 

[Continue with drumstick or turkey leg,  tail feathers, beak, plus wishbone or turkey breast, and of course to put your whole turkey self  in jump in with both feet.]
  Five Fat Turkeys In The Barn
[tune: frčre Jacque]

INTRO:
Let's get our turkeys out: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5
<count on fingers>

SONG:
Five fat turkeys, five fat turkeys
<hand with 5 fingers bobs up and down>
in the barn, in the barn
<one hand covers over other fist>
gobble, gobble, gobble
<fingers waggle under chin>
wobble, wobble, wobble
<sway hips/hands at sides, as if waddling>
run away
<one hand goes behind back>
run away
<other hand goes behind back>


[repeat with 4 fat turkeys, 3, 2, 1]
 




 

Did You Ever See A Turkey (color learning)

 

 

 

More Turkey Songs & Fingerplays

Some cute poems as well.

 

Harvest/Pumpkin Poems and Songs

 

More Fall Songs!

 

 

 

 


 

Writing

 

Make Your Own Turkey Shaped Book

First print the cover, then print out the lined pages -- as many as you need.   What will your book be about?  Use it to create a poem, turkey facts, or your own thanksgiving story.    You might also enjoy this turkey coloring page.

 

 

 

 

Social Studies

 

A Wampanoag Thanksgiving

Lesson plan for K through 1.

 

The First Thanksgiving

The great website from Scholastic.

 

Biography of Squanto (Tisquantum)

 

 

Pilgrim History

Hosted by Mayflower.com this informative site features articles and pictures of the Mayflower, its passengers, life in Plymouth, the Wampanoag, plus information on the Pilgrim's explorations of the Cape Cod area as well as on modern Plymouth.  Good reading for middle school and above, and great resource information for parents and teachers.

 

New England Cooking

Learn about the food of the early colonists.

 

Native Americans

 

The History of Thanksgiving

Most of us are familiar with the first American Thanksgiving held by the Pilgrims in 1621.   But did you know that the first official national Thanksgiving holiday was proclaimed by our first American president, George Washington, in 1789?  It wasn't until Abraham Lincoln issued a new proclamation in 1863 that our modern tradition really got started. 

Read Lincoln's Thanksgiving Proclamation, the historical document that started the modern Thanksgiving tradition.   Compare to Washington's proclamation.

Learn more about the History of Thanksgiving, from InfoPlease.

 Or read this fascinating history from the Smithsonian:  Thanksgiving in North America: From Local Harvests to National Holiday

 

 

 

 

Science

 

Turkey Facts

Did you know that Turkeys lived almost ten million years ago!  And Turkeys can see in color.   Amaze friends and family this Thanksgiving with your knowledge of turkey trivia learned here.

Even more fascinating Turkey facts

 

Wild Turkey Profile, National Geographic

Facts, photos, and video.  (Includes video of a turkey farm.)

 

Thanksgiving Mystery: Does Turkey Make You Sleepy?

For decades, or perhaps longer, Thanksgiving diners have asked the question, "Why do I feel so drowsy after the Thanksgiving meal?"  And for a while it seemed that science had found the answer:  tryptophan, a substance that in purified form causes sleepiness,  occurs naturally in turkey meat.   But new findings suggest that the levels in turkey cannot be the culprit.   Read more

 

 

 

Math

 

Thanksgiving Themed Math Worksheets

For first through fifth grades.

 

Thanksgiving Math Word Problems

Printable worksheets.

 

 

 

 

Games, Jokes, & More

 

Thanksgiving Jokes

From Kids Domain

 

Thanksgiving Games

Gratitude Grab Bag, "Turkey Hunt",  Thanksgiving Twenty Questions, and more.   Great fun with students or with the relatives on Thanksgiving Day.

 

Thanksgiving Hide N Seek

Online game.  Requires reading skills, or an adult helper.

 

Thanksgiving Super Match Up

Online game for preschoolers.

 

Family Storytelling: Pass the Talking Fork, Please

Start a new family tradition, telling tales.

 

Thanksgiving Party Games

Includes Mayflower memory game, Tom Turkey hide and seek, pin the feather on the turkey, duck duck turkey, and picking pumpkins.

 

 

 

 

Arts & Crafts

 

Pinecone Turkey

This is a great craft because it's really easy, looks so cute when finished, and best of all it can be adapted for different ages.   Older kids cans can do the whole project themselves, while younger elementary school age can assemble their own turkey using precut "heads" and hot glue.  With our 2 year old class we assembled the little turkey faces ahead of time and hot glued them to the pinecones.  Then the little ones could concentrate on slathering on the white craft glue, and attaching the feathers -- challenge enough for most of them.  (Note: kids can also dip the bottom end of the feather into a bowl of glue to stick them on the turkey.)

What you need:

medium or large pine cones
small googly eyes
craft foam sheets in brown and yellow
packages of small craft feathers in shades of brown and bright colors
white craft glue
glue gun and glue

 

 

Mini Cornucopia
If you have been looking for Thanksgiving crafts to make, then this mini cornucopia is a great project! You will end up with cute cornucopias that you can put at each guests spot at the table!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Native American FamilyNative American Family, for finger puppets or decoration!

 

 

 

Native American Crafts for Older Kids

 

 

Indian Corn

Colored popcorn is what makes this craft stand out.  First, air pop some popcorn (i.e. no oil!).  Next, place the cooled popcorn in large Ziploc baggies with some powdered tempra paint.   Use three baggies, one with purple powder, one with red powder, and one with yellow powder.  Shake well to coat the corn.   Meanwhile, use yellow construction paper to cut out some large, yellow ears of corn.  You can make these life size, or much larger.   Have your child glue the colored popcorn to the paper corn "ears".  Make your own collage too, and talk with them about how they can mix the different colored kernels in anyway they like.  Some ears might be all one color, while another mixes all the colors.  They could even play with patterning the colors -- one red, one purple, one yellow, and repeat.

(Be sure to explain the popcorn is not for eating!  The paint is non-toxic, but still...)

 

Beaded Napkin Rings

Use ordinary pony beads in fall colors to create this rustic looking napkin holders.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Turkey Place Markers

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hand and Foot Print Turkey

  1. Using brown construction paper, trace child's foot print (with shoe on), and cut out.

  2. Then trace both hands on brown construction paper.  Cut out.

  3. Trace and cut out hand prints in such colors as red, yellow, orange, green and perhaps purple, tan, and/or white.

  4. Turn foot print cut out upside down.   And -- using glue stick, tape, or craft glue -- attach colored hand prints to back of the foot print to resemble a turkey's fanned out tail

  5. Attach the two brown hand prints onto the lower portion of the foot print (the wide part), as wings.

  6. Cut a small diamond shape out of yellow construction paper.  Fold the diamond in half to form the beak.  Glue the back of the bottom portion of the beak onto the turkey's head (the small or narrow part of the foot print).

  7. Attach two googly eyes above the beak.

  8. Cut a "wattle" out of red construction paper if desired.

  9. Cut out two little turkey feet out of yellow or orange paper, if desired, and attach.

(photo coming soon)

____________________________

 

Turkey Poem

This poem can be written or typed out and attached to the back of the turkey or written on a large piece of construction paper which may be then decorated to serve as a holiday placemat.

A turkey is a funny bird,
Its head goes wobble, wobble,
All it knows is just one word,
"Gobble, gobble, gobble."

 

 

 

Turkey handprintMake a Hand Print Turkey (with poem)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wind Sock Turkey

  1. Cut the bottom and top off of an empty oatmeal box (the round, cylinder-shaped kind).  Wrap with brown construction paper.

  2. Trace a child's shoe on brown construction paper and cut out.  Use small end to form the head.  Attach large ("breast") end to the paper-covered box -- so that the head sticks up over the top of the box.

  3. Cut a diamond shape out of yellow or orange construction paper, fold in half and glue in place as the beak. 

  4. Add two googly eyes.

  5. Use a small scrap of red construction for the wattle.  Fold the red paper in several small accordion like folds (will look like small paper stairs).  Allow paper to unfold, and attach small end next to top of beak with glue.  Allow it to dangle down one side of beak. 

  6. Now create streamers out of 12x18 pieces of construction paper.  Red, green, purple, orange, even yellow, will make great colors. 

  7. Glue streamers to bottom of the tube.

  8. Trace and cut two hand prints out of brown construction paper and attach to tube for "wings", if desired.

(image coming soon)

 

Gratitude Wreath

  1. Cut an O-shaped backing out of cardboard or a paper plate.  Paint brown (metallic gold or gold glitter paint works nice also) and let dry.

  2. Meanwhile, using a leaf template, cut out paper leaves in different fall colors.  

  3. Glue some blank leaves onto the "o" shaped backing.

  4. Using the remaining leaves, write something you are thankful for on each leaf (this could be a group activity).

  5. Glue these leaves onto the wreathe.  Be sure to arrange the leaves so that they overlap and poke out in different directions -- just like real leaves.

http://kids.creativity-portal.com/free/pdf/leaf.cutouts.pdf

 

 

Maple Leaf Turkey Craft

Includes print and cut templates!

 

 

 

Paper Plate Turkey

  1. Paint a paper plate with brown tempra paint and let dry (note: for simplicity, you can simply paint the bottom side of the paper plate).

  2. Cut large, wide "feathers" out of colored construction paper.  If desired, you can "notch" them with scissors (making tiny cuts along the edges to fringe it like real feathers), but be careful not to cut too deeply.

  3. Cut a narrow oval (about the same height as paper plate) out of brown construction paper.  Glue oval onto "bottom" side of paper plate, so that one end of the oval sticks up over the edge of the plate -- by about 2 inches.

  4. Glue "feathers" onto the other side of the plate to form the turkey's magnificent tail.

  5. Cut a small heart shape out of red construction paper to form the wattle.

  6. Cut a small diamond or triangle out of orange construction paper to form the beak.

  7. First glue the heart on -- upside down -- where the turkey's chin would be.  Then glue on beak, so that it overlaps the wattle (hiding the point of the heart).

  8. Add googly eyes, or eyes cut out of construction paper.

 

Spin Art Turkeys

 

Turkey Wreath

Includes template and full directions.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Make Your Own Pilgrim Bonnet

or try this version

 

Or Pilgrim Hat

 

Make your own Indian Headband

Using a large-sized piece of brown construction paper, cut a strip to fit child's head, plus an extra inch (to overlap).  Cut an assortment of paper "feathers" from different colors of construction paper.   Attach with glue or tape to back of head band.  If using glue, allow to dry.  Then fit headband to child's head, adjusting overlap for proper fit.  Attach with tape or staple. 

For extra fun, use some colored craft feathers to glue around the top of the brown head band, so that they overlap the paper feathers.

 

Thanksgiving Coloring Sheets

From Coloring Book Fun.

 

 

 

MORE HOLIDAYS

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