Thursday, November 17, 2011

Thank You, Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is just around the corner! I love this time of the year. I love Thanksgiving and the focus it gives me on friends, family, and ALL the blessings I have. Today for preschool, I used one of my favorite Thanksgiving books and wanted to keep it simple. I love it that the kids just love to play. They learn through play and interact through play. We didn’t get all of this done, but here are several ideas for a …

“Thank You, Thanksgiving Day”

thanksgiving, thank you

  • Read “Thank You, Thanksgiving” by David Milgrim … available here.
    1. Easily one of my favorite Thanksgiving books. This little girl takes a walk to the store for whipped cream for the Thanksgiving pie. All along the way, she notices the little things … “thank you, park” “thank you, pretty clouds” “thank you, hill” (as she sleds down), “thank you, mixer” and “thank you, pie with whipped cream!”
  • How to say “Thank you”
    1. Teach the kids a few ways to say “thank you” in different languages.
    2. Have them practice saying it with you:
      • English = thank you
      • Spanish = gracias (grah-see-us)
      • Hawaiian = mahalo (muh-ha-low)
      • French = merci (mahr-see)
      • German = (dahn-kuh)
      • Japanese = (ah-ree-gah-to)
      • Portuguese = obrigado (oh-bree-gah-doh)
    3. Here’s a great link to several languages!


  • Make a colorful thankful turkey … these turned out cute!
    1. Collect several colorful paint swatches from a store like Home Depot or Lowes.
    2. Cut out a simple turkey feather shape from each swatch.
    3. Punch a hole in the bottom of each feather.DSC07008
    4. Make a simple turkey face! … Cut a round circle from brown paper. Add 2 googly eyes and a triangle beak.
    5. Punch a hole near the bottom center of the turkey head.
    6. Write “I am THANKFUL for …” along the top of the turkey head.
    7. Let the kids pick out several feathers (the more the better!)
    8. Attach the feathers to the turkey with a metal brad.
    9. Let the kids tell you what they are thankful for and write each one on a feather, then let them illustrate it. We had everything from family, to Dora, to Reese’s Pieces SmileDSC06969
  • Play with Pumpkin Playdough … I have to admit, this was my first time making homemade playdough and it was easy! It turned out great.
    1. I used this recipe from Joyce at Dinosaurs & Octopuses.
    2. It has pumpkin pie spice and vanilla extract. I actually had a head cold when I made this, so I couldn’t smell a thing. I kept having my husband smell it and tell me if it smelled pumpkiny enough. Today, I’m much better and sure enough, it smells great! Just remind the kids not to eat it Smile
    3. If you’ve never made playdough, here are some before and after pictures. It looks like a glump of goo when you start, but thickens up just right and makes great soft playdough!                                           DSC06966 DSC06968
    4. We used little rolling pins, ABC cookie cutters and popsicle sticks to play.

thanksgivingABCs DSC07013

  • Thanksgiving ABC fishing game … my 4-year-old really enjoyed this game from Making Learning Fun (tons of great ideas!)
    1. Print out the ABC sheet above.
    2. Have the kids choose a letter tile (available here)
      • You can also use Scrabble tiles or print these ABC tiles and cut them out. Just click the picture below.alphabetletters
      • Or we just used our ABC fish from another week’s activities.
    3. Have the kids name the letter, then choose a crayon and color the matching fish on their page.
    4. I loved this for my 4-year-old. It was a fun way to check and see which letters and sounds he knew.
    5. We also sang this letter sound song as he colored them in:

(to the tune of Farmer in the Dell)

The B says “buh.” The B says “buh”.

Every letter makes a sound.

The B says “buh!”


  • Play with Floating Cranberries … this was a hit too.
    1. Fill the sink or a large tub with water.
    2. Place a towel on the table or floor and just realize it’s going to get a little wet Smile I tried to be pretty easy-going about it, but we did have one “no splashing” rule.
    3. Dump in a bag (or two) of cranberries. Available in the produce section right now.
    4. Give the kids slotted spoons and tins with holes punched in the bottom.
    5. They had a great time and played and played.

thanksgivingindians  thanksgivingpilgrims

  • Pilgrims & Native American Coloring Page … also from Making Learning Fun.
    1. Print, color and cut out.
    2. Attach a popsicle stick and use to re-tell the Thanksgiving story!
    3. Or glue to a toilet paper tube and they will stand up on their own.
thanksgiving pies     Thanks for taking a picture Camie!

Snack Idea: Mini Pies … since our book “Thank You, Thanksgiving” ends with “Thank you, pie with whipped cream!” we had mini pies for our treat. I didn’t take a single picture before they were eaten Flirt male but they were bite-sized and yummy. Similar to the larger pies here.

    1. Use homemade or store-bought pie crust.
    2. Use a cup to cut circles in the crust.
    3. Press lightly into a mini muffin tin.
    4. Fill will pumpkin and apple pie filling, then bake.
    5. Or bake first, cool, then fill with chocolate pudding.
    6. Mmmm!


  1. Thank YOU for another fabulous preschool experience. My kids had fun and the turkeys they made are adorable. I think my kids ran around with chocolate around their mouths the entire day- yummy pies!

  2. Oh wow, thanks so much for all these fun ideas! I will definitely be doing some of these this week with my kiddos! I am pinning this now! I would love for you to come link up at our link

  3. thanks for the great ideas

  4. Just came across this Thanksgiving post! Love your ideas. I have linked up this page with a post on my own blog, as I am sharing a week's worth of Thanksgiving ideas for the classroom. I hope this is ok! Thanks again,
    Shelly Rees

  5. These are wonderful ideas to keep the kids engaged, I hope your preschool children enjoyed the day. My daughter’s school also organizes activities like these often and the children love it. They also arrange small parties for their student’s birthdays, and tomorrow being my daughter’s birthday, she is excited to go to school. We have also organized a party for her on the weekend at the popular event space NYC.


I love your comments! Feel free to leave a link if you've done any of these activities with your kids. I'd love to visit your blog!

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