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Thanksgiving Craft Ideas

Even if you're from a country that doesn't celebrate Thanksgiving, or your home country celebrates it on a different date, it's hard to avoid the celebration if you work in an eikaiwa. So to help you out here are a couple of easy crafts you might like to try.

Autumn (or Fall) Tree
Thanksgiving Card
Cornucopia Poster

Click the icon to download all 3 crafts as a printable PDF file. (474KB)
Includes templates.


  Autumn (or Fall) Tree

Okay so strictly speaking this isn't just for Thanksgiving but with the autumn calendar crammed with Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas preparations this is the only place this one belongs. I suppose that as it's a group craft it involves a lot of sharing, which is in the general spirit of Thanksgiving.

Take a large sheet of blank paper (A3 works great) and draw a tree template on to it using a black marker pen. Don't worry about making the tree look perfect as we'll be pasting leaves on top of it in the next step. Tree Template
Leaf Template Using several copies of the leaf template invite the students to color the various shapes. Work together to decide upon suitable autumn colors. Cut roughly around the shapes and attach to the tree with glue. Once completed invite the students to write their names on the poster.

EXTRA: Instead of using the leaf template, use real leaves, acorns, chesnuts and the like collected outdoors. Might need something stronger paper glue to stick them to the paper though!

  Thanksgiving Card

An easy turkey card using nothing more than colored construction paper, a pen, scissors and your students hand.

Take a sheet of colored construction paper and make the turkey feathers by tracing around the child's hand (just the fingers, omit the thumb.) Cut out and glue onto a piece of white card folded in half. Cut a circle from construction paper and glue this on top of the feathers to form the turkey's body. Using scraps of construction paper create a head, beak and wattle (that dangly bit that turkey's have under their beaks). Draw some feet using a marker pen.Turkey

Write 'Happy Thanksgiving' on the front of the card, and inside write a short message and the students name inside.

Note: If the children are old enough they can do the writing themselves, or for younger children I usually do all the writing but for the name I write it in lightly in pencil and get the children to trace over it.

  Cornucopia

I always thought this was just the name of a chain of health foods shops but it seems I was mistaken. Of course I now know that a cornucopia was the magical horn from Greek mythology that would fill with whatever it's owner desired, usually fruit and flowers. So a cornucopia is the 'horn of plenty' that has become a symbol of Thanksgiving, with the horn fashioned from wicker rather than from Zeus's goat.

Below we'll fashion ours from construction paper:

Print a copy of the fruit and veg template. Get the students to color the fruit and vegetables. Feel free to add your own.
Once the students have colored, named, and told you if they like each one, or not, help with the cutting out.

Hint: With small children I usually draw a rough dotted line around each picture as a cutting guide. Saves having to wait while they try follow every single curve on the picture.
Fruit & Veg
Cornucopia Template Once they have gathered all their cut out shapes help the students decide where they will place each item and glue onto the cornucopia template.

Finally help them add their names and hang on the wall.
Here are two we made earlier
Completed Cornucopia Craft Completed Horn of Plenty Craft





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