- A Teacher's Guide to Thanksgiving Lesson Plans, Activities and Games!
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Thanksgiving ABC's. Young students like order and categorization. Shaping Up Turkeys. Who knew math and reading could create Thanksgiving turkeys? Your students will "read" directions to draw shapely turkeys in this independent art activity. Learning About Family Traditions. Use this lesson to give your students an opportunity to share about their family traditions. Prior to the lesson, they'll complete a worksheet to gather information about the way their family honors their culture and beliefs with traditions. They'll bring their information back to the classroom to share with their peers.
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Thanksgiving Essay & Bulletin Board for Middle School Language Arts Class
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Thanksgiving Activities, Lessons, and Printables
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Thanksgiving Lesson Plans
Then, have students participate in a creative writing assignment. Ask them to take on the persona of a turkey who is vying for that coveted spot of being pardoned to a life of luxurious retirement. In their piece, students should work on developing a specific voice. How would a turkey in this situation share his or her plea? Would it be most effective to be humorous, desperate, cunning, argumentative, defensive, or despondent? Write along with your teens, and have fun laughing as you share your responses. As a class, watch this short video clip.
Stop the video around before it shows the moral of the story. Use this video as an opportunity to write about theme. Ask students to brainstorm possible lessons viewers should take away from this story, and then begin identifying text evidence that supports the development of the theme. Thanksgiving Memes. Memes can be an engaging way to incorporate informal writing wit into the classroom.
Pictures often communicate an idea far better than a paragraph of words. As a class, study some examples of irony, comedy, or allusion in Thanksgiving memes. Then, encourage students to create one of their own to share! Top 10 List. Families appreciate when students bring home information to share at the Thanksgiving dinner table. Ask students to write a Top 10 list of what they are most thankful for. For an added level of difficulty or to differentiate, you could also have them research Thanksgiving and write down the Top 10 most interesting facts about the holiday or the Top 10 Thanksgiving myths everyone believes.
To further tie this activity into your writing standards, have students work on properly citing their facts in MLA format. Ask students to get together in small groups and discuss behaviors, attitudes, and dialogue that convey an attitude of gratitude. Do the characters in each book do similar things…or different? Then, ask students to reflect on how they personally show thankful hearts.
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