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24 Thanksgiving Ideas and Activities for Schools 

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Thanksgiving is celebrated on the fourth Thursday of November every year.

As the name suggests, this is the time to thank or appreciate the people and things in our life we are grateful for.

This is really a great occasion for schools, offices, and families to have some fun time and celebrate togetherness.

Kids are always looking for such special days to get out of the boredom of daily lessons and enjoy with school mates and friends.

Teachers often take special interest to bring in some great activities for the students to give a good break for them from busy study schedules.

There will be lots of arts, crafts, creative plays, and fun worksheets. Teachers will surely be looking for incorporating awesome activities that can not only bring fun but also improve their reading, vocabulary and creative and critical thinking.

Thanksgiving is around the corner.

Are you looking for interesting Thanksgiving ideas and activities to make the day special for the students?!

Here we are sharing a few of the much-loved fun and easy activities that can make the Thanksgiving Day celebrations really enjoyable for the students.

1. Thanksgiving Crosswords

This is a fun thanksgiving activity that can be given to the students on the eve of Thanksgiving. It is a good opportunity for students to learn more about the holiday history.

Teachers can go for many interesting crosswords available online or create a fresh one on your own.

You can brief about the special day before the activity and discuss the answers after the time frame to help them have a complete picture.

2. Thanksgiving Turkey

This is an interesting writing and coloring activity that makes students think harder about the real meaning of gratitude.

All students are given a page of feathers and a turkey to color. For every feather, students have to write about something or someone to whom they are really thankful for.

Meanwhile, they can color it, cut it out and stick the feathers to design an adorable Turkey for the special day.

3. Thanksgiving Men

Students are asked to prepare a comparison chart of the items included in the very first Thanksgiving Day and the present menu.

They can even prepare a chart to compare the menu items for celebrations in North America and other parts of the world. This will improve their research skills and help them to get their facts right.

4. Thanksgiving Word Searches

This thanksgiving activity can be tried out by students of all grades. Students can find this as a great opportunity to reinforce vocabulary, spelling skills and problem-solving.

You can create a puzzle on your own or download from a variety of templates available online.

There are different categories like holiday word search or fall word search puzzles from which students have to figure out a specific number or set of words.

5. Popcorn Race

This is an interactive game to make the classroom live on this special day. Divide the class into two groups and let them name their team with a Thanksgiving-style name.

Give two bowls to each team, one empty and one with popcorn kernels.

Place the empty bowl on one side and popcorn bowl on the opposite side. Let each of the teams line up with a spoon in everyone’s hand.

Ask them to transfer the popcorn using spoons to fill up the empty bowl. The team that moves all kernels first wins.

Also Read: Top 15 School Bus Tracking Apps

6. Thanksgiving Bingo

Bingo is always a great fun game for students of all grades. In this particular Bingo, you can include words that connect well to Thanksgiving Day.

This is a great way to improve their vocabulary associated with this celebration. For higher grades, you can make it even more challenging with playing combinations like edges, four corners and finally full card.

7. Play T-Day True or False

This is a great opportunity for students to do thorough research and get a better understanding of the Thanksgiving Day facts.

Give students enough time to be prepared with the facts about the day. On the activity day, teachers can group the class into two and read out statements about T-Day.

Each student from a group can take their turn to write if it is True or False on the blackboard. A teacher can finally add up points to announce the winning team and correct them if their facts are not right.

8. Reach out to the Community

Schools can use this as an opportunity to think big about helping at least the nearest community.

Let students come out with plans about small thanksgiving ideas they can do together to contribute some goodness to the society. This can be something like cleaning the nearby playground or planting trees in a free area.

Everybody can sit together and discuss these plans and choose some realistic thanksgiving ideas and work on it.

9. Turkey Spelling Game

This is a creative and fun spelling activity. Teacher has to first write a Thanksgiving special word like ‘TURKEY’ on the class board.

Divide the class into two groups. A student from each group can now take the turn to form a word using only the alphabets of this particular word (Example: Key).

When one team fails to write a word, the other team wins. Or you can continue the game with more ‘words’.

10. Thanksgiving Poems

This is a great way to bring in some art and creativity and introduce poetic vocabulary to students.

In this activity, students are asked to write a poem based on anything that can be related to Thanksgiving Day.

It can be about the memories of old celebrations or about how you wish to celebrate the upcoming Thanksgiving. They can later share their poems in front of the class and may even tune it to make a song out of it.

11. Disguise a Turkey

This is a fun art project in which you can incorporate anything like writing connections and literacy.

There are fun turkey books available from which you can discuss turkey disguise projects through short stories or poems.

If you are out of thanksgiving ideas, just go online to find many turkey templates.

12. Make a Gratitude Tree

This is an amazing mindfulness activity for students on this special day. Students can take this as a great opportunity to count their blessings.

This practice is heartwarming, easy and fun to do and it is even backed by science as it enhances social intelligence and happiness. All that you need is Twigs or tree branches, vase, colored paper to make leaves, and string to hang leaves.

13. Thanksgiving Charades and Pictionary

This is a fun thanksgiving activity that keeps students in their toe with full-on energy. The classroom can be divided into two groups. Each student from a group can take a turn to come in front of a classroom when a volunteer from another team will secretly convey a Thanksgiving word.

The student has to act the word or draw it on the board depending on the game rules. His/her team can try guessing the words when they act or draw. Repeat the activity with other teams and so on.

14. Thanksgiving Timeline

In this activity, students are asked to design a timeline of the Thanksgiving celebrations. They have to do research on what all celebrations or rituals were there on the very first Thanksgiving Day.

And they can frame a timeline with what all changes happened year after year and finally the insights of the upcoming Thanksgiving.

15. Thanksgiving Matching Game

This interesting activity can trigger their memory skills. First of all, the classroom can be divided into groups and provide cards of Thanksgiving symbols.

This includes corn, pilgrim, turkey, America Indian, tepee, log cabin, leaves, canoe, etc.

Each team gets two cards each of the same symbols. The supervisor can now scramble the cards and give them back and ask to match the pairs. The team that does the job first wins.

Also Read: Geography Quiz  For Kids (107 Questions and Answers)

16. “Secret Friend” Exercise

This is one of the very common but really interesting activities in school for many celebrations and Thanksgiving is no exception.

Teachers can coordinate all students for this activity at least a week before when they can choose a ‘secret friend’ from paper lots with names of all students.

And on a special day, they can disclose their secret friend and give a special gift.

17. Thanksgiving Posters

As students get a few days off from studies on this eve, let them do research posters on Thanksgiving on their return.

The teacher can divide them into small groups and give them a topic or a particular area of the celebration to make posters. The topics can include Autumn Equinox, ancient harvest celebrations, or different countries that celebrate the harvest.

18. Pass the Plate

On this special day, the family usually invites their friends and dear ones home and serve them special meals.

Why not make it a classroom activity? Students can invite friends from other classes and serve them ‘food’. In this activity, you can use actual paper plates in which they can write down the food name and the ingredients.

It can be made more fun by bringing lots of food magazines and they can cut out pictures and paste on plates or make them draw it.

19. Thanksgiving Quiz

This is an interesting activity that can be performed on a special day. A lot of Thanksgiving quizzes are available online for various class grades.

Teachers can personalize the quiz for a specific set of students. It can even be made a competitive activity by conducting classroom wise or by making it a whole school quiz activity.

A special Thanksgiving gift can be offered for the winning team.

20. Thanksgiving Recipes for Kids

This is also a great occasion for making and sharing delicious foodies. Teachers can arrange a session where students can be involved in making simple recipes.

Give enough guidance to make sweet potato pie, turkey cookies, and marshmallow pilgrim hats or let them research new cool recipes. Let them surprise their mother and family members with these recipes on Thanksgiving.

21. Thanksgiving Puzzles

This is a good option for the lower grade students and they will have fun.

Teachers can opt for a variety of Thanksgiving puzzles like fill in the words puzzle, spelling maze, circle the correct word, word building, fill in the missing letter and a lot more.

Make sure that these puzzles are customized for the special day to make it fun.

22. Research Global Celebrations

This is an interesting activity that can be given to high school students.

Even when the celebrations for Thanksgiving are at peak in the United States of America, people in many other countries also celebrate the festival in their own ways.

In this activity, you can ask students to do research on the global celebrations that are happening on this special day.

23. Design Tissue Paper Turkey

Ask students to shed out their creativity by designing a tissue paper turkey.

They can do good research to design it to perfection and make it a competition to build a good spirit among the students. School can provide the materials needed to do the craft and the resulting adorable, non-edible turkey would be a treat to watch when it is made by little hands.

24. Thanksgiving Classroom Decorations

Decorations are always part of Thanksgiving celebrations. Ask students to come up with ideas to decorate the classrooms and common areas of the school with Thanksgiving special decors.

This is also a craft activity for students as they design Thanksgiving cut-outs, letter banner, Turkey centerpieces, pumpkin spice sign, fall banners and more.

There are a lot more options and thanksgiving ideas to make the day even more fun. Students can take this opportunity to showcase their talents and creativity.

Teachers may consider the suggestions of students also before finalizing the list of activities. There are lots of printables and worksheets available online to help teachers to set up the day’s activities with ease.

Teachers can even come up with videos about Thanksgiving or simply a slideshow to introduce different celebrations and activities or ask a group of selected students to take up the role.

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