Thanksgiving Lesson Plans and Activities
This collection of preK-12 teaching resources is designed to help students understand the Thanksgiving holiday and use it as a reflective educational experience that honors the full breadth of its history. In recognizing the importance of this time of year, we are committed to shedding light on the stories that are often untold—particularly those of Native American cultures, whose land and lives form an integral part of the Thanksgiving narrative.
Through engaging Thanksgiving lesson plans, historical accounts, cultural insights and interactive activities, students will not only learn about the early interactions between Native Americans and settlers but also explore the rich tapestry of Native American contributions to our shared history. This approach fosters a classroom environment where Thanksgiving becomes more than a holiday—it becomes a moment for meaningful contemplation and appreciation for the diversity and complexity of our past.
Our collection also includes resources for StoryCorps’ “The Great Thanksgiving Listen," an engaging project that encourages students to connect with elders in their communities and capture their life stories. This activity fosters a sense of belonging and continuity, as students become historians of their own families and neighborhoods. By recording these interviews, they contribute to a collective memory bank that spans diverse cultures and experiences, affirming the value of every voice in the tapestry of American life.
The video-based Thanksgiving lesson plans and activities in this collection utilize the power of visual storytelling to bring the past and present into sharp focus. These engaging resources help students visualize the Thanksgiving story from multiple perspectives, nurturing empathy and a deeper understanding of the holiday's origins and evolution.
With Thanksgiving writing prompts, students will also have a canvas to express their thoughts and feelings about the holiday. Whether they’re crafting heartfelt letters of gratitude or exploring creative narratives that challenge the traditional Thanksgiving mythos, these exercises strengthen their critical thinking and writing skills.
Thanksgiving crafts and activities inject a hands-on element to learning, allowing students to create tangible representations of the holiday's symbols. These artistic endeavors are more than just fun; they're a conduit for understanding symbolism, tradition and the joys of shared experiences.
Together, these resources are designed to enrich the Thanksgiving experience in your classroom, ensuring that as we give thanks, we also give thought to the diverse narratives that have shaped this holiday throughout the years. Join us in making this Thanksgiving not only a time of festivity but also one of meaningful learning and connection.