Thanksgiving is one of the holidays each year that seems to keep getting pushed back further and further, until all you see are Christmas lights and Black Friday lines. All the while, we are missing out on a perfect opportunity to teach our kids to be grateful for their lives and how they could even help others. Granted, I am toying with the idea of putting our Christmas decorations up early this year (it seems like I'm the only one in the house that isn't sure yet!), but I do still want to make sure Bubba participates in Thanksgiving and learns from it.
I have told him the short version of the history of Thanksgiving; he will hear the longer, truer account when he is a little older. But for now, he knows that the Pilgrims were having trouble growing food in their new homes and the Native Americans taught them about certain crops, including corn, and they all got together for a feast. Yes I know, there is a ton more to it than that, but I want to save that for later. The main point I wanted him to understand is that from a problem arises an opportunity to help, leading to a solution, and being grateful. Not too shabby, right?
I had been trying to think of a simple craft for him to do with supplies we already had around the house. This idea sprung up last Thanksgiving (the one in the picture), but I will have him do the same thing this year. It was a great way for him to not only stop to think about what he is grateful for, but to practice handwriting as well. I call it the Thankful Turkey!
The Thankful Turkey is really super simple, and only takes a few supplies that you most likely have on hand. Here is what we did:
THANKFUL TURKEY CRAFT
Construction Paper (we used white, yellow, orange, and red)
Glue (stick or Elmer's bottle-type)
1. Decide which color construction paper you'd like as the background and set aside. On the remaining pieces, use a pencil to draw a large circle (body), a smaller circle (head), and five large "feathers". On another piece, draw out five more large feathers and the part that goes underneath the beak (totally can't think of what that is called at the moment...). Lastly, draw out a beak, wings, and nine smaller feathers. With some white paper, draw the eye shape.
2. Have your child write on the ten large feathers what they are thankful for. This is the fun part!
3. After everything is written out, have your child arrange the shapes onto the background sheet of construction paper to where it resembles a turkey. I had to help Bubba with this one last year, but his Thankful Turkey this year will be all his handiwork.
4. Help to glue the pieces down, and color in the pupils, eyebrows, and nares with the permanent marker.
5. Hang on the fridge!
I like this craft because all ages can participate and it is a great way to look back at the things your child held most dear. I can't wait to see Bubba's this year!
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