The one with Thanksgiving activities for upper elementary

After a lot of debate and turmoil since early October, rising Covid case numbers finally led my county to officially decide to remain virtual through January. 

Now that I can officially plan virtual Thanksgiving activities for my fourth graders, I’m ready to share what we’re doing!
2021 Update: Even though we’re back in person this year, I’ll still be able to use these! They work well for in-person or virtual.
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1. Thankful One Pager: this has the potential to be low-tech for my kiddos that like to draw by hand, which I like. With the intense screen time daily, I like offering opportunities to do something low-tech. Last year, I shared this idea on IG the day I attempted it because it was last minute and easy to do. This image is my hand drawn version from last year, and I will also allow my class to do one on Google Slides if they want.

2. Balloons over Broadway: The True Story of the Puppeteer of Macy’s Parade: there had to be a book, of course! A failed attempt at buying this last year meant as soon as I saw it at Target online, I had it shipped. This is a great non-fiction story about the puppeteer behind the Macy’s Day Parade. After reading it, we’ll design our own balloons and talk about our Thanksgiving traditions. Snag a copy of the Google Slides template I made here.

3. Math Mystery Pixel: because they’re easy as pie. Using word problems centered around the traditional turkey trot, we’ll review all four operations. I love that these are self-checking, so students can do a little of their own error analysis. Of course, I can still pull students in small groups who need extra support. 

Mystery Pixel Thanksgiving Word Problems

4. Thanksgiving Research Flipbook: honestly, this is a maybe but I’m keeping it as an option. It’s a social studies/reading activity where students research the origins of Thanksgiving (including what really happened), how it became holiday, discuss family traditions, and learn a little about turkeys. It usually takes my classes about an hour and a half-ish in person. 

5. Turkey Directed Drawing! I *just* saw this idea on IG and I love Art Hub 4 Kids. We’ll definitely be using this!

What are your Thanksgiving teaching plans?

Looking forward to December? Check out Christmas ideas here.

P.S. Are you working on SEL this year? Grab a free SEL Checking In Google Form here! 

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