With Thanksgiving just around the corner I’m sure lots of you are excited to spend time with family and friends. With some extra time off, and the kids home from school it can also be overwhelming to find something to keep kids busy and in the holiday spirit. If your kiddos are anything like I was as a child, then a good craft project is always appreciated. If that craft project just so happens to help kids think about thankfulness as well, then it’s all the better! With that in mind I present to you-
The Thankful Prayer Turkey! (Or TPT for short)
This was a fun and easy to do project that lead to some really good conversation with my 5-year-old niece. This could be done with most ages, but younger kiddos will need a lot more help. Here is how we did it!
Pen or Pencil (maybe some markers)
Construction Paper in Various Colors
First and foremost we had to pick our colors. I tired to encourage the red-orange-yellow look in the name of tradition, but what 5-year-old girl doesn’t put a little pink on every craft project? So we traced our hands 4 times, once on the brown paper for our turkey “body” and then once for each of our three “feather” colors. The farther apart our fingers were the better they turned out once you put it all together.
From there we need to cut things out. This is where younger kiddos might need some extra help. For the 5-year-old it just meant drawing some lines to help her know what we were cutting around and what we were cutting off. (And then Auntie Kristin took over the cutting and let her take the pictures when little-bit got bored.)
For your turkey body you cut out the thumb and hand, but ignore the 4 fingers. All of the other colors are the opposite; cut out the fingers and hand, ignore the thumb.
Next it’s time to glue. What worked best for us was to have her glue on the “body” and add the feathers layer by layer.
Finally it was time for my favorite part- writing on the feathers. Instead of just being done when we had a cute turkey, I thought it would be fun to let our craft lead to some discussion about what we are thankful for. I gave the options of either drawing pictures or writing on the feathers and being the “Big Girl” she is it was time to write! If you have a little one who wants to draw or write on their own, it might be helpful to write on the back of each feather what their picture is of. (That way we won’t forget when it’s time to pray.)
This was so much fun because it gave us a chance to talk about all of the wonderful things we can be thankful for. We talked about foods, toys, people, places, and activities. My niece had endless suggestions of what to put on her turkey, but soon realized that she had limited space and needed to be selective. It was so fun to see her choose “God” over “Frozen” and how the first thing she insisted on writing was her best friend’s name (which she can spell all by herself!)
When we were all done she decided to put it by her bed so that she could pray to God and thank Him for all of the things on her turkey. This could also easily be pulled out to use as a prayer before dinner, or even just to lead a prayer right after you make your turkey. Regardless of how your family chooses to use these turkeys, it will get kids focused on thankfulness instead of belly-fullness.