Fall is in the air and the holidays are coming soon, whether we like it or not! Halloween is just around the corner and Thanksgiving will be here in the blink of an eye (I can’t believe it!). Soon you’ll be seeing lots of turkey hand prints and other turkey craft ideas. Here is a unique Thanksgiving turkey craft that is sure to get your kids excited for Thanksgiving Day!
This craft is for toddlers through grade school. Toddlers will need help assembling the turkey or you may choose to assemble the turkey on your own as I did. Either way they are sure to enjoy the color mixing experience with crumbled leaves and will be happy to see this little turkey come to life!
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Color Mixing Experience with Leaves
I had some used watercolor paper hanging around from a previous project so I decided we could paint over them. On my son’s paper I squirted yellow and red paint and on my daughter’s I put yellow, red and blue. I suggest using a lot of paint in order to get the leaves to stick well enough to the paper. I also placed a bowl of crumbled leaves on the side. They went right at it and dumped the leaves before they even started painting!
Below are the finished products. My son’s yellow and red mix became a dark orange and my daughters became brown (with specs of color).
Once the papers dry you can take your contact paper and carefully place it sticky side down onto the leaf art. This is to keep the leaves in place on the paper. Now it is time to get started on assembling the turkey. You can download the turkey printout here. Once you have your print out (I suggest printing onto white card stock for stability) you will cut out each piece to use as a template. Use the brown leaf art for the body of the turkey, and the red for some of the feathers of the turkey. The rest of the feathers and the facial features will be made with the paint swatches.
For grade schoolers 1nd grade and up, I would suggest allowing the child to use the template on their own, placing it down on the paper with one hand and using a pen to go around the template with the other. When all of the pieces are drawn onto the papers, they may cut them out.
For children who are unable to use the template I would suggest either helping them to do it or doing it for them and allowing them to assemble the turkey on their own. Since my twin toddlers are only 23-months-old I decided to do all of the cutting and assembling on my own.
Option 1 for Assembling the Turkey (Adult Assembly)
Once everything is cut out you may begin assembling the turkey. I placed all of the feathers face down and slightly overlapped them, adding tape to keep them in place (image 1). Then I glued the facial features with school glue and placed them onto the body of the turkey (image 2). Next I glued the wings onto the back feathers, and added glue on top where the body of the turkey would go (image 3). Lastly I placed the body of the turkey on top of the glue (image 4). At this point I took the turkey and put it under a large book to ensure that it would dry flat. Once it is done drying, cut a piece of magnetic tape and place it onto the back of the feathers.
Option 2 for Assembling the Turkey (Child Assembly)
Once all of the pieces are cut out, your child may glue the turkey feathers onto a piece of white card stock paper. Help them to place the feathers properly. Next, have your child glue the wings onto the back feathers. Now, glue the facial features onto the body. Last, glue the body of the turkey onto the feathers and wings. Once everything dries you may cut around the turkey.
Of course older kids ages six and up may be able to do this part of the project independently. You will be able to determine which method to use based on the development of your child.
When the turkey is assembled, cut a piece of magnetic tape and place it on the back. My kids’ turkeys are now beautifully displayed on our refrigerator!
Hope you enjoyed this cute little turkey craft!
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