Thanksgiving Ideas and Projects: Fun, Free and Simple Activities and Writing Prompts for Children

Thanksgiving is a wonderful time to enjoy a variety of creative projects with your children. The ideas below include writing, research, crafts and miscellaneous learning projects that are fun and inexpensive. Enjoy!

Writing Prompts

The following writing prompts will get the creative juices flowing and are appropriate for a variety of ages. If your child is too young to write his or her own story down on paper, have him/her dictate it to you and then illustrate.

An easy way to make a story book is to fold a piece of construction paper in half and fold several sheets of plain white paper in half. Insert the white sheets and staple along where the spine of a book would be. Younger children may need to have lines drawn on the bottom of the page so they can write their sentences. They can then draw a picture on the top half of the page.

If you desire a larger book, use two pieces of construction paper – one for the cover and one for the back. Staple white sheets inside. The staples can be put along the top or the left side depending on your child’s preference.

When the Pilgrims landed…

Thanksgiving means…

My Perfect Thanksgiving Day

My Mayflower Voyage

Ten Ways to Use a Turkey (without eating it)

How to Make Thanksgiving Dinner

Tom Turkey’s Fantastic Adventure

Thanksgiving at Grandma’s

The Perfect Thanksgiving Meal

My Thanksgiving Leftovers Recipe

A Thanksgiving Fairy Tale

Thanksgiving Blizzard

TAS Society: Turkeys Against Stuffing

The Thanksgiving Our Airplane Got Lost

A Prairie Thanksgiving

The Year Without Cranberries

The Case of the Missing Pumpkin Pie

Thanksgiving Chaos: A Squirrel, a Pumpkin and My Dog, Buddy

Thanksgiving in Space

The Man Who Outlawed Thanksgiving

Read About and Research

There is so much to learn about this special American holiday. You can start by doing some reading about these topics.

The Pilgrims

The Mayflower

The Mayflower Compact

Lincoln’s Thanksgiving Proclamation of 1863

Thanksgiving Celebration History Timeline

Why is Thanksgiving always the fourth Thursday?

Regional Thanksgiving Traditions

One way to keep track of what you learn is by doing a KWL chart. KWL stands for Know (what you already know), Want (what you want to know) and Learn (what you have learned). Start by drawing two vertical lines to make a chart on a piece of paper so there are three equal sections. Label the left section Know, the middle section Want, and the right section Learn. In the first section, write down everything you know about the topic. In the middle section, make a list of what you want to learn. Use the middle section questions to guide your learning and reading. After you have finished your reading and studying, fill in the right section with everything you have learned. If any of your want to learn questions in the middle section weren’t answered, continue digging to see if you can find the answers!


There are so many ways to celebrate Thanksgiving! This list of projects varies widely in age appropriateness, although many can be adapted to make them work for a variety of ages. Most of these projects can be completed with simple supplies you probably already have around your home.

Make an acrostic for Thanksgiving Day. For each letter, think of a word or phrase related to Thanksgiving.

How many words can you make using the letters in “Happy Thanksgiving Day!”

Illustrate a drawing of The Mayflower.

Make a diorama.

Design a Thanksgiving card.

Make placemats for Thanksgiving dinner.

Create a bookmark favor for your Thanksgiving guests.

Create a board game.

Make a puppet.

Make a card game.

Write a Mayflower Times or Plymouth Herald newspaper.

Draw a poster advertising traveling to America on The Mayflower.

Write a Thanksgiving Day skit.

Write a Pilgrim biography.

Chose a favorite Thanksgiving book and write a letter to a friend, telling him about why he should buy the book and read it.

Write a poem about the first Thanksgiving.

Pretend you are a Pilgrim child. Write a letter to a friend back home and tell them about your voyage and first year in America.

Draw a comic strip.

Make a flannel board story.

Design a cross stitch or needlepoint sampler.

Make a word search.

Make a crossword puzzle.

Make a mobile out of a hanger.

Make a banner.

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