Here are some Thanksgiving literacy ideas you can use in your preschool, pre-k, or kindergarten classroom.
Turkey Clothespin Matching
I was looking for some fun Thanksgiving literacy ideas for matching upper to lowercase letters so I created this clothespin activity pictured above.
I like to use clothespins whenever possible because they help develop the small muscles in children’s hands that are used for holding pencils and crayons. I have included this activity for you as a free download, just click on the picture below.
Supplies to Make Turkey Letter Matching Game
How to Make the Turkey Clothespin Game
To create this game yourself print the turkey letter matching mats on cardstock and laminate. Next, buy the cheapest clothespins you can find, I found mine at the Dollar Tree. The clothespins need to be cheap because the more expensive ones have a wax finish that will resist the Sharpie marker.
Then, use a fine tip permanent marker to write one lowercase letter on the clip end of each clothespin. I used a different color pen for each set of clothespins so the kids didn’t get them mixed up.
Place one turkey letter matching mat and 26 clothespins in a plastic, zip top bag, one bag per student in your small group. I taught the students to keep their clothespins in their own bag and just pull out one at a time; this helped keep the clothespins from getting mixed up.
Turkey Feather Matching
Heidi of HeidiSongs and I put our heads together to come up with the next idea pictured above. She drew the turkeys herself using a special program and I cut the feathers out of laminated construction paper. I chose to make this activity magnetic because magnet activities are fun and keep my children on task for longer periods of time in addition to providing a defined area in which to work so the feathers don’t scatter all over the place.
To create this game yourself you can visit Heidi’s blog and download the turkeys for free, print them on cardstock, and laminate.
Next, laminate colored construction paper and cut out feather shapes. Write the lowercase letters on the tops of the feathers with a Sharpie. I cut small pieces of magnetic tape and attached them to the back of each feather and turkey.
Students will match the lowercase feathers to the uppercase turkeys on their cookie sheets. On her blog Heidi also shares an idea for using clothespins with this activity instead of magnets that I will be trying out next week.
Turkey Tail Sight Word or Alphabet Search
This is another idea from Heidi that I modified and turned into an ActivBoard flipchart. I put 26 turkeys in the flipchart and wrote a letter on each one just like Heidi’s cards. Behind one turkey I hid a pilgrim hat. The children chant the following:
Turkey tails, turkey tails! One, two, three!
Turkey tails, turkey tails! Where could it be?
Next, I choose one child to come up to the board and identify a turkey by naming the letter, and then they move that turkey to see if the pilgrim hat is hiding behind. You could create this flipchart several ways using the different tools in your toolbar.