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Thanksgiving Turkeys Crafts Lesson

Updated on June 20, 2019
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I am a Christian. I was an 8th-grade American History teacher. I am currently a freelance writer, public speaker, & homeschooling mom of 8.

Coffee Filter Turkey Crafts
Coffee Filter Turkey Crafts

This is the 12th lesson in a series of 26 hands-on art lessons for Kindergarten, 1st, & 2nd grade. This lesson focuses on Thanksgiving Crafts. I used this plan while teaching a weekly 45 minute art class for children in Kindergarten, 1st, & 2nd grades. My lessons usually teach art concepts with a focus on artists, but for holidays we create fun themed crafts. The lessons provide a variety of art techniques to make each lesson engaging & memorable. Use these fun lessons with your classroom, homeschool, after-school program, or co-op!

Coloring & painting the coffee filter
Coloring & painting the coffee filter

Craft 1: Coffee Filter Turkeys

1. Color the coffee filters.

  • (Make sure to have the tables covered with paper or a table cloth.)
  • Pass out a quarter of a coffee filter to each student.
  • Allow for them to color them using warm colors: red, orange, & yellow washable markers.
  • After they're happy with the amount, have them "paint" water over the colors on the coffee filter.
  • Allow them to dry while we make the turkey bodies.

You will need:

  • 1/4 coffee filter per student
  • red, orange, & yellow washable markers
  • a larger paintbrush per student
  • small containers of water

2. If possible, have students move to a different table (so they won't get anything wet) to create the turkey bodies.

  • Have them cut out the turkey body. (I used the template from https://www.easypeasyandfun.com/turkey-leaf-craft/ .)
  • They can glue on the eyes, beak, & red waddle.
  • After they've finished that, the can glue the turkey body to the partially-dried coffee filter tail.
  • If desired, attach a magnet or clothespin to the back of the coffee filter tail.

You will need per student:

  • turkey body template printed on brown paper (I used the template from https://www.easypeasyandfun.com/turkey-leaf-craft/ .)
  • scissors
  • glue (such as Elmer's liquid)
  • 2 wiggly eyes
  • yellow or orange beak (from construction paper or felt)
  • red waddle (from construction paper or felt)
  • magnet or clothespin (optional)

Some of the finished coffee filter turkeys
Some of the finished coffee filter turkeys

Craft 2: Pom Pom Turkey Puppet

Our second craft took a bit more assistance from me as I needed to knot the string, so I didn't get photos of the process. The kids loved getting to play with their string puppets afterward! I'll describe how we made them below the photo.

Pop Pom Turkey Puppet
Pop Pom Turkey Puppet

How to Make Pom Pom Turkey Puppets

  1. Use tacky glue to glue 2 wiggly eyes, 1 felt beak, & 1 felt waddle to a small, brown pom pom.
  2. Then glue the head to the larger brown pom pom body.
  3. Glue 3 craft feathers to the back of the pom pom body.
  4. If desired, add a small bow to the neck area of the turkey. Alternatively, some of my girls preferred to make their turkeys girls by adding the bow to the top of the head. We attached string between the head and body pom poms.
  5. Use lots of glue to attach a felt hat* to the head, & allow the craft to dry at least 5 minutes before holding it up by the string.
  6. *To save time, attach string and a dowel rod to the hat ahead of time as this was the only step that almost all the children needed assistance.

You will need per student:

  • tacky glue (I laid small blobs of it on little plates & gave each student a craft stick to use to get the glue.)
  • 1 small brown pom pom
  • 1 large brown pom pom
  • 2 wiggly eyes
  • 1 small felt beak in yellow or orange
  • 1 small red felt waddle
  • 3 colored craft feathers in red, yellow, & orange
  • a foam pilgrim's hat with buckle (I purchased these at a craft store, but you could make your own using black foam. Use a glue gun to attach the pieces together.)
  • elastic cord or string
  • dowel rod

As students finish their projects, take photos of them with their Thanksgiving turkey crafts.
As students finish their projects, take photos of them with their Thanksgiving turkey crafts.

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© 2018 Shannon

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