Thanksgiving School

After spending a full week week learning about Native Americans, including an awesome field trip, we had a very relaxed three-day school-week, where we learned about Pilgrims, the first Thanksgiving, and the origin of some of our other Thanksgiving traditions.

Most of the books we read we also used last year. Some of those Turkey and Bunny remembered from last time, and looked forward to, and others they’d completely forgotten, so they were like new. And I had one new book to read, too–a good mix, I think!

Monday we learned about the life of a fictional Pilgrim boy in Samuel Eaton’s Day. We also read Thanksgiving: A Harvest Celebration, which is a nice summary of the first Thanksgiving (also from a fictional perspective). We put together a “thankful tree”–it was very interesting to see what things Turkey and Bunny are particularly thankful for. I discovered that Bunny focused more on the people in her life, while Turkey focused more on things.

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Tuesday we continued our series about life at the time of the first Thanksgiving with Sarah Morton’s Day. It’s a nice companion to Samuel Eaton’s Day (as well as Tapenum’s Day from last week), and Turkey and Bunny both enjoyed learning about what a day in the life of a Pilgrim child was like, from the clothes that they wore and the chores that they had, to the food they ate and the games they played.

We read our new book on Tuesday as well–An Old Fashioned Thanksgiving by the same author who wrote one of my favorite books from childhood (Little Women)–Louisa May Alcott. This was a charming book about children attempting to prepare a Thanksgiving feast for their parents in the 1800s. We had a fun time identifying the parts of the meal that were the same as ours (Turkey, of course!), and what was different (apple slump, for one). When we were finished, we made the same hand and foot-print turkeys that we made last year. Fun to see how they’ve grown, and fun to see how they assemble them differently every year!

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Wednesday we read a somewhat fictionalized account of the first Macy’s Parade–Milly and the Macy’s Parade–and a fun little book called The Night Before Thanksgiving, written in the same style as the classic Night Before Christmas. Turkey and Bunny were especially looking forward to this one, because it’s so silly and humorous, but it also touches on many Thanksgiving traditions, such as football, family gatherings, and leftovers on Friday!

We also began making pretty glittered turkey puppets–the assembly of those had to wait until Thanksgiving Day after the glue had dried, but we made a great mess with the glitter on Wednesday!

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