Kids' Easy How to Make Thanksgiving Pine Cone Turkey Place Cards

Safe, Fast, Easy to Make Turkey Placecards

Place cards for every member of the family.
Place cards for every member of the family. | Source

It is great to participate in large, family-bonding formal holiday meals. This craft idea can help you by engaging the younger members of the family in an activity which contributes to the table decor, and keeps them busy (productively occupied.) Since it can be completed quickly - no glue is involved, therefore there is no drying time - this art activity can be done on the day of the meal by all the youngsters. Older cousins or siblings can lend a helping hand to younger ones.

Furthermore, most households with young children own the supplies, so no great expense will be incurred. In my area, it is easy to get pine cones at Thanksgiving time. If this is not the case for you, an arts and crafts store may carry them. The use of scissors and safety in not ingesting materials may require supervision, but most children who are school age will be just fine working on these place card holders. Furthermore, the great-aunts and grandparents will be absolutely delighted at the creativity and love poured into these turkeys.

Supplies

Notecards 3 x 5 inches or 4 by 6 inches (or construction paper which is heavy weight cut to that size)

Scissors and a pencil

Playdough (homemade or store-bought) about a walnut-sized amount for each place card holder

Markers, crayons, colored pencils

Pine cones

These particular pine cones are small.  It would be alright to use pine cones up to about 4 inches long.
These particular pine cones are small. It would be alright to use pine cones up to about 4 inches long. | Source
Colored note cards.  Note cards are a heavy card stock paper which hold a fold easily.
Colored note cards. Note cards are a heavy card stock paper which hold a fold easily. | Source
Markers
Markers | Source
Play dough.
Play dough. | Source
Scissors and a pencil.
Scissors and a pencil. | Source

What to Do:

Take one pine cone and one piece of paper or one notecard. If the note card is lined, turn it to the unlined side. Place the pine cone on it as shown in the photo, so that part of the cone extends beyond the short end. Mark the spot where the other end rests on the paper. Fold the paper there so that the extra paper stands up in the air.

Find spot where pine cone belongs.
Find spot where pine cone belongs. | Source
Fold the card along the mark.
Fold the card along the mark. | Source

The part of the card flat on the table will eventually have the pine cone attached to it. Not all the paper is needed, so cut off each corner. The result is a triangle base starting from the fold on each side out to the short edge of the paper. See the photo.

The other part of the card will be the turkey tail. Cut it in a scallop shell shape.

Cut the bottom so that it becomes a triangle.
Cut the bottom so that it becomes a triangle. | Source
Cut around the back so that it is the fanned-out tail of a turkey.  Simple is just fine!
Cut around the back so that it is the fanned-out tail of a turkey. Simple is just fine! | Source

On the turkey tail, print the name of a dinner guest.


Then use colored pencils, crayons, markers etc. to color the tail. There are no rules. This is about creativity, not realistic representation.

Most children are proud of being able to spell their own name.  For the other guests, an older helper may be needed.
Most children are proud of being able to spell their own name. For the other guests, an older helper may be needed. | Source
Decorating comes naturally.
Decorating comes naturally. | Source

Next, you apply the playdough or wall tacky material. Roll into a ball smaller than the size of a cherry to stick the back of the pine cone to the paper close to the fold line. Then make a head and neck with the remaining playdough. If you narrow the bottom of the neck into a point, inserting into the pine cone is easier.

About this much play dough is needed for each turkey.  One glob is for the turkey's head and neck.  The other glob is what will stick the pine cone to the card stock.
About this much play dough is needed for each turkey. One glob is for the turkey's head and neck. The other glob is what will stick the pine cone to the card stock. | Source
Put the sticking glob on to the rump end of the pine cone.  This will be where it had been attached to the tree.
Put the sticking glob on to the rump end of the pine cone. This will be where it had been attached to the tree. | Source
Push the cone onto the paper triangle base.
Push the cone onto the paper triangle base. | Source
Then carefully yet firmly stick the head onto the cone.  If you can get some of the neck in between two cuplets of the cone, that will be great.
Then carefully yet firmly stick the head onto the cone. If you can get some of the neck in between two cuplets of the cone, that will be great. | Source

That is all there is to the craft. These look equally grand at the adult table and at the kids' table. be sure to take pictures before the meal begins!

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Both the children and adults benefit from the bonding of contributing to a family event with the others. It is this sort of activity which forms fond memories for years to come.

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Children's Book about Extended Family

What happens on Thanksgiving in your family?

Do your kids see a grandparent at a Thanksgiving feast?

  • Yes, we always have at least 3 generations of the family present.
  • No, the Thanksgiving holiday does not include visits with grandparents.
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Photos and text copyright 2011 Maren E. Morgan, all rights reserved.

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Comments 11 comments

Sinea Pies profile image

Sinea Pies 5 years ago from Northeastern United States

This craft idea is absolutely adorable! I love it! My blog readers would love to see this. Most of them are young moms. I'm going to add the link to tomorrow's post...it's about DIY gifts.


Maren Morgan M-T profile image

Maren Morgan M-T 5 years ago from Pennsylvania Author

Sinea Pies, thanks very much. I have seen ideas using pine cones but which require much more assistance from adults. I like giving power to the youngsters. And, by using playdough as the "stick it together" medium, you don't have sticky, goopy glue and waiting time needed for it to dry.


Just About It profile image

Just About It 5 years ago from southern CA

This is a great idea! It allows the youngsters to participate while having a fun project.


Maren Morgan M-T profile image

Maren Morgan M-T 5 years ago from Pennsylvania Author

Thanks, Just About It. That's the way I feel about it. Plus, the supplies are not exotic, so the kids could decide to make more animals at a later time using this as a starting point.


alissaroberts profile image

alissaroberts 5 years ago from Normandy, TN

Super cute idea! My kids love anything dealing with playdoh so this is one I will have to try with them. Thanks for sharing!


Maren Morgan M-T profile image

Maren Morgan M-T 5 years ago from Pennsylvania Author

alissaroberts, i am so glad this looks good for your family. Let us know what wondrous creations your kids make.


AliciaC profile image

AliciaC 5 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

This looks like a great craft idea for children. It's easy, fun and gives them a chance to be creative!


randomcreative profile image

randomcreative 5 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Cute suggestion and so easy!


Sinea Pies profile image

Sinea Pies 5 years ago from Northeastern United States

Hi Maren...the link to this hub is now my latest blog post.

www.ducksnarow.com Have a Happy Thanksgiving!


Maren Morgan M-T profile image

Maren Morgan M-T 5 years ago from Pennsylvania Author

AliciaC and Randomcreative, thanks. "Create"is what kids do naturally. I imagine one could have Thanksgiving peacocks and all sorts of critters by the time the kids are done! I love it.


Maren Morgan M-T profile image

Maren Morgan M-T 5 years ago from Pennsylvania Author

Sinea Pies - thanks very much! Happy Gobbley Gobble Day to you, also!

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