Get a new twist on turkeys this year with this 3D wall art. The colorful feathers, simple materials, and easy instructions will have your students creating display-worthy Thanksgiving art. Incorporate some fun turkey facts and writing activities to craft your own thematic unit for the season.
Duration: 20 minutes
Grades 1–4; Age range: 6–10 years
Follow the steps below or print the instructions with visuals.
Step 1: Measure blue construction paper (11.5″ square) and paste onto yellow construction paper (12″ square). (FYI, inch and feet marks are straight quotes, not curly quotes)
Step 2: Using circle template, (4″cardboard circle) trace the outline of the turkey’s body onto the blue construction paper 2″ from the bottom of the page.
Step 3: Measure and cut strips of assorted colors of construction paper for the feathers (1″ x 6″).
Step 4: Curl tips of the feathers around a pencil and glue onto blue construction paper (before turkey body).
Step 5: Using circle template (4″ cardboard), trace and cut turkey body out of brown construction paper. Cut out two smaller circles for wings.
Step 6: Cut out freeform of turkey head on red construction paper and cut and glue yellow beak. Draw on the eyes with a black marker. Paste head onto turkey body.
Step 7: (Not shown on video) Cut out two brown construction paper strips for spacers (1″ x 3″). Fold them in half twice and glue them to the turkey body. Then glue the other side to the brown construction paper. (These give the turkey body a 3D-impression by making the body pop out from the background.)
Step 8: Fold wings in half and glue to the backside of the turkey body.
Step 9: Draw or glue sticks or pretzels for legs.
Lesson Tips and Ideas
Life science: Pair this art activity with a study of food webs/predator prey relationships as well as turkey facts. Younger students may label the parts of a turkey.
Vocabulary: Discuss the meanings of turkey-related words such as poult, wattle, tom, and hen.
Writing prompts: Use the turkey craft as a gateway to a writing assignment. A few writing suggestions are: Write a creative story about your turkey. If you could have a special guest for Thanksgiving, who would it be and why? Describe your family’s Thanksgiving traditions. What are your favorite fall desserts? Explain five things you are thankful for and why.
Heather Foudy is a certified elementary teacher with over 7 years’ experience as an educator and volunteer in the classroom. She enjoys creating lessons that are meaningful and creative for students. She is currently working for Evan-Moor’s marketing and communications team and enjoys building learning opportunities that are both meaningful and creative for students and teachers alike.