Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Kid's Thanksgiving Activities (Unit Study)


I love Thanksgiving! It's my favorite holiday. I love how it's just about family and friends sharing a delicious meal and remembering our blessings. There's no pressure to find the perfect gift, no debate over how secular or how religious to be, no hustle and bustle. It's just enjoying your loved ones and a big hunk of pumpkin pie.

Last week I pulled out my Thanksgiving children's books and realized I've accumulated quite a collection. (By the way, if you can only buy one Thanksgiving book make it Thanksgiving: A Time to Remember by Barbara Rainey. It is the best book ever!!) As I looked at the pile of 18 books, and 1 CD set, I realized I needed a reading and activity plan in order to get the best use of my books.

Being a home school teacher, it didn't take me long to write out Thanksgiving lesson plans (linked to my plan) for the month of November. A couple of years ago I made a similar list of children's Thanksgiving activities and it really helped us stay on track throughout the month.

This year's Thanksgiving unit study includes a couple of craft activities (I'm not crafty so there aren't many), writing prompts, drawing ideas, a list of websites with more ideas and a list of the Thanksgiving themed books I own.

Please understand that my plan is geared for my family - our weekly schedule and personalities. It might work for your family as it is, or it might need some tweaking, but I hope you'll find something in it that you can use! You'll also notice that it's only Monday - Friday. That's because I'm using this study for our History/Civics curriculum this month.

edited November 5, 20011: If you look at the plan you'll see "Make hardtack" and a link to an online recipe. I do NOT recommend you make this recipe. Seriously. It was as hard as a hockey puck. Someone could chip a tooth!

Do you have a favorite Thanksgiving tradition or book that's not on my list? Please share!!

Be sure to like Stephanie's Mommy Brain on Facebook where I'm sharing more Thanksgiving tips and links throughout November.
* More Thanksgiving Kids Activities and Books Posts 

15 comments:

stephanie @ Simple Things said...

Thanks for sharing! I'm going to do a Thanksgiving unit study with the girls this year (using one that I have had for years) but I'll enjoy looking yours over and probably borrowing a few of your book and craft ideas. : )

Stephanie said...

You're welcome. After I planned out Thanksgiving for November I realized spending a month focusing on gratitude is a great way to get us ready for Advent.

I also came across another great activity that I didn't put on the lesson plans. Register at Scholastic (http://www.scholastic.com/scholastic_thanksgiving/webcast.htm?eml=OT%2Fe%2F20111013%2F%2Ftxtl%2FThanksgiving%2F0%2F%2FTgiving%2FSL2%2F%2F%2F%2F%2F&ym_MID=1372311&ym_rid=4583755) and you can join their weekly webcast and receive emails from characters related to Thanksgiving.

Claeys said...

I found some great Thanksgiving teaching presentations at http://www.thanksgiving-food-gifts.com/thanksgiving-ppt-thankgiving-powerpoint-free.php if that helps.

Beth Ann Claeys

Stephanie said...

Thanks for that link Beth Ann. I've looked at some of the links listed on the page and they seem pretty fun. Definitely a "think outside the box" way of learning about Thanksgiving. One is a Thanksgiving Jeopardy game. Fun for older kids!

Christie said...

Just ordered the Rainey book and one of the McGovern books plus another book about family traditions in general! So excited they will be here by Nov 1st!!

We are planning to write letters this week! Weird couple of weeks here. I learned I have asthma! Hoping to be back on track Monday after all the excitement!

Stephanie said...

Christie, I'm sure you are going to love the Thanksgiving books! The Rainey book is my favorite from all of them. It can be used with adults or kids and is beautiful on a coffee table!

Amy said...

Oh, reading lesson plans sure brought back memories! Thanks so much for sharing--definitely looks like a fun month!! I'm requesting some books from the library and look forward to reading them together at our house. I agree, love the Rainey book. Seems like I tear up each time I read Lincoln's declaration!

Stephanie said...

I've found a few other activities that didn't make it on the official lesson plan but might be done anyway. I'm sharing those links on my Facebook page. One of them is here: http://www.facebook.com/StephaniesMommyBrain/posts/244680765581882.

Carrie said...

This year/this month I'm in survival month with a teething infant. I'm pulling books off the shelf which are Thanksgiving themed and we're talking about gratefulness (loosely.) I want to be focused during the month of November. If I could just find a few moments to organize my thoughts. Oh wait...

Kalista said...

Very cool! Such a pain that Canadian Thanksgiving is so much earlier, I miss all these great ideas! Maybe next year! ;)

Found your blog on the Hip Home school Hop! :)

Kalista
www.whenwereathome.blogspot.com

Our Side of the Mountain said...

We just started our Thanksgiving activities. I'm kinda tired of doing them! LOL So, we're doing something a bit different this year: putting on a paper doll play of the first Thanksgiving feast! It should be interesting! Hoppin' by from HHH!

Stephanie said...

Our Side of the Mountain, a paper doll play sounds like fun! I'm all for going "outside the box." We don't do a lot of arts and crafts, I'm just not crafty, so this gives me motivation to pull out the crayons and glue sticks.

Stephanie said...

Carrie,

There's nothing wrong with survival mode!! As long as we don't stay there too long. I hope my unit study is helpful for giving your thoughts a place to start. Maybe picking one book and activity a week is the way to go this year. :)

Lexi said...

Thanks for sharing! Looks like fun! I need to plan our Thanksgiving studies soon!

Stephanie said...

Thanks Lexi! I hope you find something you can use from my list. :)

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