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Turkey Craft | Maple Leaves Theme | Thanksgiving
Preschool Lesson Plan Printable Activities

Activities Materials

Activities 1 & 2 > Visit lesson plans and resources for > What is a turkey? and What is Thanksgiving?

This turkey craft is available in two sizes. The smaller version is easier for younger children. A set can be made to make a turkey family. It can be assembled in various ways and the process can be made more challenging and creative depending on the age of the children.

The leaves on the template are maple leaves a national symbol of Canada and featured in the flag.

Turkey Craft | Maple Leaves Theme | Thanksgiving
Preschool Lesson Plan Printable Activities
Activity 3 > Maple Leaves Turkey Craft
The crafts can stand-up so they make great decorations and dramatic play toys. It is important that the craft be printed on heavy duty construction paper or card stock in order to stand up. The pieces can also be traced onto thin paper plates and then cut out and assembled.

Both crafts can be assembled by replacing template #1 (body) for a standard thin (10" to 8") paper plate and the small version by using a 6"-5" small thin paper plate.

The feathers are created by using the maple leaves template, a different type of leave pattern or real leaves. Other options for the feathers are: craft feathers, or cut elongated ovals in different sizes of decorative paper.

Printing & assembly options:
Option 1: Print all color templates and proceed to assembly instructions below

Option 2:
Print all black & white templates and proceed to assembly instructions below

Option 3: Large version only
Use a thin paper plate instead of template #1 and draw and cut out a head separately.
Print template #2 & #3 color version
Paint/decorate the back of the paper plate in the color desired, wait until plate is dry and proceed with assembly as described below.

Option 4: Large version only -
* Print template 1 (black & white version) directly onto your color choice of construction paper or craft paper
* Print template #2 (b/w) onto a complimentary color or print #2 & #3 on white paper and color these pieces separately or
* Trace leaves directly on different colors of craft paper

Option 5: Small Version Only
* Use a small paper plate instead of the large circle template #1 black and white. Paint the back in desired color.
Trace leaves directly on different colors of craft paper.

All versions:

Children can color and decorate all other templates and pieces proceed with assembly described below.

Assembly instructions suggested:
At this point all template pieces and or paper plate should be decorated and hand prints are ready.

1. Fold template #1 (body) or paper plate in half, color is showing on both sides.

2. Feet and body assembly: Adult will have to do most of this part of the assembly - a stapler is required.
-Fold the feet template on the center dotted line so color is showing on both sides
-Insert the folded feet template on the center round portion up to the dotted line of template #1 (body) or folded paper plate and staple at least twice in place -- refer to the illustration for positioning (Note: glue will not hold the pieces in place).
-Turn and fold the feet upward on both sides to stand on the dotted lines. For reinforcement, glue a small piece of cardboard or card stock to the feet base.

3. While adult is completing step 2 of the feet assembly, children can glue the beak, comb (crest), and wattles on the head template. Note: Fold beak along the center line and place glue where indicated -- the beak will open and close.

4. Glue assembled head to right or left corner of body template (this will depend in which direction the feet were positioned and stapled.

5. Leaves (feathers) Assembly Instructions:
Small Version: Glue one or two leaves on each side of the body template. This step is important because one leaf handprint (feather) on each side will create balance so the finished craft can stand. Add equal amount of printed or real leaves on each side to also maintain balance. Bend the printed leaves slightly one way and the other to make the craft more realistic and stable.
Note: If gluing other alternatives - elongated ovals for example, glue same amount on both sides to maintain balance

Large version: Same procedure as above except you may glue more leaves (up to six) to fill up as the illustration shows - not to exceed 3 handprints on each side or it will be too heavy and not stand.

Other ideas for decorating:
Older children 4.5, 5 and 6 need more challenge to make the process more interesting and explore other art techniques or simply set up various materials and different brushes, sponge rollers, etc. and allow them to discover ways to paint and decorate.

Painting the paper plate, or body template and remaining templates is an opportunity to explore other techniques:

  • Mosaic: fill the body and/or leaf template with real maple leaves or crushed leaves in different colors. Fill the the templates with cut up & shapes of tissue paper, or left over craft paper, and cut out excess.
  • Use a sponge roller or pieces of sponges cut into basic shapes, and mix shades and/or roll paint.
  • Use a dropper
  • Glue yarn to half of toilet paper tube in different designs, roll the tube over a thin layer of paints and roll over the template - really neat designs will be achieved. Messy? Yes, but lots of fun.
  • Explore with stripes and color mixing.
  • Make the crafts and use as name signs/table setting for a theme unit or party.

Maple Leaves Turkey Craft
maple leaves turkey craft
Illustration only

Large version

#1 | #2 | #3
print #3 twice

| #2 | #3
print #3 twice

maple leaves turkey craft small version
Illustration only
Small version

Color #1 | #2

Black&White #1 | #2

Alphabet printable activities
letter t turkey printable activities
T is for Turkey

letter l leaf printable activities
L is for Leaf