Even though I'm a vegetarian, I enjoy using turkeys as a theme for Thanksgiving ... I just don't focus on turkeys on the Thanksgiving table. Today, I want to share some free turkey printables and ideas for hands-on activities for preschoolers through first graders.
You'll find many more activities for preschoolers through first graders throughout the year along with presentation ideas in my previous posts at PreK + K Sharing.
You'll also find ideas for using free printables to create activity trays here: How to Use Printables to Create Montessori-Inspired Activities.
Disclosure: This post contains Montessori Services affiliate links at no cost to you.
Turkey Practical Life and Color Matching Activity
This was a fun activity to prepare. I used the the Turkey Template by The Mommy Teacher to create a turkey from a colander. Because I had found a small colander at the grocery store, I printed out the turkey template at 50%. With a larger colander, I would have used the larger size. I also printed out the Turkey Feather Color Game from TOADally Tots for the feathers. I used a large plastic tray from Montessori Services.
When I laminated the feathers before cutting them out, they were stiff enough to insert into the colander holes for a practical life activity. I would recommend using this as a color-matching activity as well. I only used two feathers of each color for the matching activity.
For a child who isn't comfortable with identifying colors yet, you could first lay out the feathers on a table or rug. Then place one of the feathers on the table or rug in front of the child and ask him or her to find the matching feather. After that, the child could insert the feathers into the colander. A child who's more comfortable with color names could be asked to find the red feathers and so on before inserting them into the colander turkey.
Although I used feathers from the printable, I imagine colored feathers from a craft store would work very well. You could also use different colors of pipe cleaners and have the child place matching colored beads on each pipe cleaner after it's inserted into a hole in the colander.
Turkey Cutting Activity
For this activity, I used the Thanksgiving Cut It Out from This Reading Mama. This printable has many fun turkey cutting activities for various skill levels. The photo is just one example of a tray for cutting straight lines to make turkey puzzles. The tray is an inexpensive wooden tray from Michaels hobby store.
Ten Little Turkeys Activity and Song
I always loved holiday songs and props for "circle times" as a Montessori teacher and as a homeschooler. This activity uses the Ten Little Turkeys Activity and Song printable. I especially like that it includes a link to a very cute "Ten Little Turkeys" song with original melody and audio by Rachel Rambach. You could use the props at circle time and allow children to use the tray to act out the song on their own.
Turkey Fractions Activity
The turkey fractions activity uses the Turkey Fractions printable from Classroom Game Nook. This is just a fun themed extension to fraction work. The printable also contains the fraction words, but I only used the symbols and numerical fractions. I put the layout on a large hemmed work rug from Montessori Services.
Build-a-Turkey Phonetic Reading Activity
This was a super-easy activity to prepare. I used Build a Turkey - CVC Freebie from My Fabulous Class and a a medium-size tray from Montessori Services. This is simply a fun way for children to work on blending phonetic sounds into words.
More Free Printables and Thanksgiving Activities
Go to my post at Living Montessori Now for links to LOTS of turkey freebies from around the blogosphere: Free Turkey Printables and Montessori-Inspired Turkey Activities.
You'll find lots of Montessori-inspired Thanksgiving activities and ideas in these posts at Living Montessori Now: Montessori-Inspired Gratitude Activities, How to Help Your Child Feel Comfortable Greeting Relatives, Table Setting, How to Teach Your Child Table Manners for Holiday Gatherings, Homeschool Thanksgiving, Activity of the Week – Montessori Thanksgiving Noun Sorting Work, Montessori-Inspired Corn Unit, Montessori-Inspired Thanksgiving Activities, Kids in the Kitchen on Thanksgiving, Montessori-Inspired Thanksgiving Math Activities, Thanksgiving Grace and Courtesy, Montessori-Inspired Thanksgiving Math Activities and Free Printables, Montessori-Inspired Native American Unit
Enjoy the rest of autumn!
Deb Chitwood is a certified Montessori teacher with a master’s degree in Early Childhood Studies from Sheffield Hallam University in Sheffield, England. Deb taught in Montessori schools in Iowa and Arizona before becoming owner/director/teacher of her own Montessori school in South Dakota. Later, she homeschooled her two children through high school. Deb is now a Montessori writer who lives in Colorado Springs with her husband of 38 years and their cat of 12 years. She blogs at Living Montessori Now.
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