Thanksgiving Activities

Happy November everyone!!!  As we're entering this week it's hard to believe how little time there is until Thanksgiving. We're lucky in our district that we get the entire week off!  With that said, there are two weeks until break. I have a student teacher right now and I'm kind of bummed because some of my favorite activities are Thanksgiving things!

So to deal with my "withdrawal" from teaching Thanksgiving songs I thought I'd share a few of my favorites!

One of the first songs I ever learned for Thanksgiving I learned during my student teaching from Cindy McCaskill. It's a song called Grinding Corn. I've blogged about it before and you can read that here.  Last year we added a stick passing game and it's really been successful with all the classes I taught it to (and I had FIVE rounds of 2nd grade last year!). Here's a little video:

The other super fun, new thing we did last year was a turkey rhythm race.  I bought inflatable turkey beach balls from Oriental trading. I put one rhythm on each of the turkeys. The class was then divided into four groups. Each group would have a student stand, then race down to grab a turkey, bring it back and the whole class would read the rhythm pattern that the four turkeys created:

Sad note about this: the turkey beach balls have been discontinued at Oriental Trading. Boo!!! But they do have inflatable reindeer so go stock up and do this same activity in December! 

My older kids really like my Turkey Lurkey Football Rhythm Blitz games... it's basically a glorified version of "post office". But the catch is they work as teams.  I like this because it promotes cooperative learning.  Here you can see how they're helping each other out:

Another fun song, that's fun anytime and great for "la" is "Round and Round." The words are:
Round and round the wheel goes round
As it turns the corn is ground.

The students keep singing it over and over, with one student in the center who is the miller. The miller at any point shouts "FLOUR!" When this occurs all students scatter, finding a new partner. They DON'T want to be the miller at the end of the game (well, let's admit it, some of them do... lol)

The other thing that my kids might be doing is playing Rhythm Wars.  Here are my 5th graders playing it (you can also play it with them tapping each other's pool noodle light sabers. I'm currently redoing this set, check it out here.

If you're looking for more songs to teach, that also teach musical concepts check out my two Thanksgiving song bundles.  
This is the set from last year: 

And this is this year's set:

Have a great week everyone!


  1. We used to do the old 'marching band spiral' with 'Round and Round'. They loved moving into the spiral and then back out! :-)

  2. These games look so awesome! I am a second year teacher and still have so much to learn. How did you make the rhythm noodles? Are they pool noodles cut in half?

  3. This looks so fun! How did you make the rhythm noodles - are they pool noodles cut in half?


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