Thanksgiving Teaching Moments for Preschoolers

Rebekah - posted on 11/21/2010 ( 4 moms have responded )

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Here are some simple and very inexpensive ways to teach preschoolers (ages 2-5) using the Thanksgiving theme:

Basic Math (Counting) - Game
Cut out a turkey shape out of brown paper or do what I did and find a clipart of a turkey.
Get some feathers in a baggie.
Glue the turkey on poster board, leaving just a little space for feathers to be slipped into.
Then using a large dice, have your child roll it and help them learn what the number is, then count out the correct number of feathers and have child stick into the turkey.

Indian Corn - Craft
Cut out a corn shape out of yellow paper.
Pop some popcorn.
Have children cover the yellow corn shape with glue (I use rubber cement, easier to clean up and easier for my 2 year old to spread).
Have child glue popcorn on.
Then child uses rubber cement (or any glue you prefer) to dab on the popcorn and cover with glitter.
I did the wordless book colors (black, red, white, green, gold) and gave the meanings to each.

Thanksgiving Place Mats
Only need pictures, glue/tape, and contact paper.
Have child glue pictures to whatever size paper they want, I used construction paper. Then write on the top, "Thank You God for..." and all the pictures are what your child is to be thankful for (mommy, daddy, grandparents, siblings, butterflies, bugs, dinosaurs, trains, etc.) Cover with contact paper when done, makes it easy to clean up at dinner time.

Teach them Psalm 100:4
Break it down to their level "Give thanks to God." Repeat over and over throughout the day.

Window Decorations
Grab those felt stickers in the shapes of leaves, pumpkins, scarecrows, acorns, turkeys, etc. Have your child decorate your windows. If you live in a cold state, before you remove from the window, use a hair dryer to warm them up and it will remove easier, otherwise have Orange Goop on hand to remove the stickyness that might remain.

Go Back to the Roots
Print out a coloring page with pilgrims and indians around the feast or giving thanks for the harvest. Tell them a shortened version of the story while child colors/paints. Better yet, let them do pudding painting - yummy and fun! OR print a colored picture and cut out each shape and have your child glue to felt shapes and place on larger felt sheet to tell the story, etc.

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4 Comments

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Victoria - posted on 11/22/2010

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Shame I didn't have some of these last month when we had Canadian Thanksgiving. Great ideas Rebekah, Thanks.

Rebekah - posted on 11/22/2010

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I love the tree and leaves one... we do that at church for family time, it's cool. :)

Heather - posted on 11/22/2010

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Great ideas! One idea that I found was to use brown paper grocery bags to make the shape of a tree trunk and add branches to it. Then use construction paper to cut out leaf shapes and have kids write (or tell you) what they are thankful for.

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