Thanksgiving crafts are the perfect reason to take some time off from kitchen duty and let your crafty side roam free.
Let's all Give Thanks for Glitter and Glue
Thanksgiving is often a holiday spent slaving over a hot stove. The results of all this culinary frenzy are the center of the season, but why should food monopolize your time and stress you out. Take a breather, gather the kids and have a bit of fun. Thanksgiving and harvest are rich with all sorts of crafting opportunities.
Hand Print Turkey: A Classic
No childs memory book is complete without at least one handprint turkey. The classic and most easily made handprint turkey is a simple outline of your childs hand. Decorate the thumb with a snood, beak and eyes to make the face. Then let your child decorate the rest of the body. The other fingers serve as the tail feathers. To take it up a notch or two glue actual feathers to the tail, use glue and red glitter for the snood or dress the turkey with clothing giving it a personality. Have your child create a barnyard scene and perhaps write a story of poem to along with their creation.
Pilgrim Boy Hats
Make a cylinder from black construction paper to form the body of the hat. Dont forget to add a buckle. Cut a buckle out of gold or silver paper then glue it to the hat near the bottom. To make a buckle with fashion appeal add glitter or cut out a buckle then wrap it with tinfoil. To make the brim cut out a large circle, with a smaller circle on the inside to make a hole in the center. The center hole should be at least a half inch smaller than the hole in the bottom of the hat. To attach the brim, cut the half inch over lap into tabs. Fold the tabs back to create an opening the same size as the hole in the upper portion of the hat. Glue each tab inside the hat and allow to dry. To help the hat stay in place, add yarn that can be tied under the chin.
To make a piggy bank, or candy corn holder attach the brim to the upper portion of the hat without cutting a hole in the bottom. Use a thick line of plain glue or hot glue to attach the pieces of the hat together then allow to dry. For a candy holder leave the top open. For a bank close the top by cutting a circle that is a half inch larger than the opening in the top, cutting then gluing the tabs inside the top of the hat. Dont forget to cut a slot for coins to pass through.
Pilgrim Girl Bonnets
If your little pilgrim comes in the girl variety, you can make a bonnet for her easily. Supplies you will need are: a large piece of white paper, hole punch, yarn and scissors.
Place the paper lengthwise on the work surface and make the brim of the bonnet by folding back a one inch strip along the long side. In the back cut two slits about 3-4 inches long, toward the front of the hat. Shape the bonnet to your dames head by placing it on top of her head and bending the bonnet around her head. To have it hold its shape over lap the paper where the slits were cut and glue in place. If a long tail of paper is formed as the bonnet curves simply fold it under and glue it in place. Use the hole punch on the bottom corners in front and use yarn to create ties.
Corn and popcorn were both introduced to the Pilgrims by their native American friends According to historical accounts both corn and popcorn were served during the feasts of thanks the pilgrims and native Americans so long ago.
This history is great fun not only to eat, but craft! Start by either having the children draw a stalk of corn, or give them a template. Use green construction paper to create the stalk and husk of the ear of corn. Leave the husk open so that the cob inside is showing. Now you can either use corn kernels or popped corn to create the ripe corn cob.
Another delicious variation starts with a styrofoam base in the shape of an ear of corn. Attach the corn kernels or popped corn to the styrofoam pattern with hot glue, or pins. If you are using pop corn and want to add an extra challenge try stringing the fluffy white pop corn onto some thread with a needle. Then take the string and wind it around the styrofoam. Once the base is dressed out with kernels wrap it with scraps of green material to represent the husks. Make a bunch of them and hang them on the wall, or use in your thanksgiving center piece.
Anyone for dress up? Paper bags are a great base for costumes. Gather together paper grocery bags, crayons, glue and brown construction paper. Cut the paper bag open. If there is print on the bag you can turn it inside out. For a better fit you may want to alter the opening at the neck by making it larger. To make the sleeves cut openings in the sides of the bag.
Now that the cutting work is done, comes the fun: decoration! Let your kids decorate the front, sides and back anyway they wish. All you need to do is get out the supplies then sit back and watch. Kids are so creative there will be some fabulous creations emerging. To add more fun supply the kids with glitter. If you are going for authenticity show them the basic zigzag, spiral or stick figure patterns often seen in Native American art. You can also add fringe by cutting the bag, or strips of construction paper then gluing them to the bag.
Horn of Plenty
To create your very own horn of plenty start with an over size piece of construction paper then carefully cut slits length wise. Be sure to leave an inch wide boarder around the outside edge uncut. Next prepare inch wide strips of construction paper that are same length as the shorter side of the large construction paper you have just cut. Use the strips of paper to create a woven pattern by weaving the horn of plenty. Glue the ends of each strip securely in place when you are done weaving.
The cone shape is created by rolling the woven construction paper starting with the long side of the paper then gluing it in place. You can now add all your favorite fruits and vegetables, real or construction paper it makes no difference. Change it up a bit by going on a nature walk and let your child select his or her favorite colored leaves to display inside your cornucopia.
Paper Dolls with Pilgrim Clothes
Paper dolls are perfect Thanksgiving crafts. Little girls love paper dolls, let this Thanksgiving be marked by a new doll created by your child. This easy project begins with a basic body pattern of a boy and a girl. Let your child draw face, hair and any other decorations they may like on the pattern. Cut out the pattern. The doll alone is not enough. Next comes the attire. You can use patterns, or use the doll as your reference and let the child function as designer and creator. To make these dolls applicable to the season include basic pilgrim garb in the wardrobe.
The variety and creative potential is limited only by your childs imagination. A double bonus is that once the fun of creation is done, the fun of play is just begun. It is best to use heavy paper or laminate the colored doll and clothing. If your child intends to play with his or her creation these preparations will dramatically increase the longevity of your childs creation.
Placemats for Thanksgiving Dinner
Let your child help with the dinner table décor by creating custom homemade place mats for each place setting. Have your children draw a picture of each person attending dinner. Perhaps a picture of what they are thankful for this year.
If drawing or painting is not something that sounds fun, you can weave placemats. Start with any color of construction paper you like, and then cut slits in the paper leaving a one inch boarder all the way around intact. Next weave the construction paper with narrow strips of construction paper securing the end of each strip in place with glue once the weaving is done. Decorate with construction paper cut into leaves, acorns, corn, pilgrim hats, buckles or turkeys anything goes.
You can also have the place mats double as place markers by having the names of your guests written on each mat.
There is so much to be grateful for; may this be the year that cute Thanksgiving crafts, time spent with the ones you love the most and stress free family fun are high on your list and fresh in your memories.