Elementary School Thanksgiving Resources

Thanksgiving Theme Learning Ideas and Resources

Elementary School Thanksgiving Resources

History of Pudding

Food historians generally agree the first puddings made by ancient cooks produced foods similar to sausages. Medieval puddings were still mostly meat-based. The earliest Pudding recipe in the British Museum dates back to around 1420.

It is very likely the Indians introduced the Pilgrims to pudding and that it was served during their Thanksgiving feast. To be sure it was nothing like the puddings we eat today. Learn more about Indian Pudding. Then learn everything you ever wanted to know about Hasty Pudding and the Pudding Stick.

Did you know that pudding didn't always come in a box? Homemade Vanilla Pudding is fun and easy to make. This recipe can even be adapted to create a wonderful Vanilla Sauce to top Bread Pudding, Apple Dumplings and other tempting treats. To make a creamy vanilla sauce, simply thin with milk during the cooking process, and pour over your favorite dessert. Try this recipe:

Homemade Vanilla Pudding Recipe

  • 2 Cups milk
  • 3 Egg yolks
  • ½ C. white sugar
  • 3 Tbsp. cornstarch
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 Tbsp. butter

In medium saucepan over medium heat, blend milk and egg yolks, heat until bubbles form at edges. In a bowl, combine sugar, cornstarch and salt. Pour into hot milk, a little at a time, stirring to dissolve. Add butter and vanilla.

Continue to cook and stir until mixture thickens enough to coat the back of a metal spoon. Do not boil. Remove from heat, stir in vanilla and butter. Pour into serving dishes. Chill before serving.


Make Vanilla Pudding from a box mix.

Compare and discuss the results.

Star in Your Own Thanksgiving Story

While you are waiting for your pudding to cool, you can create your very own Thanksgiving Story, with you as the star.

Star in Your Own Thanksgiving Story, simply follow the link, then fill in the blanks to create your story. Be sure to print out a copy and share it with family and friends.

Thanksgiving Hangman created by The Dimension's Edge, Inc.

Thanksgiving Plays, Skits, and Puppet Plays

Help the kids put on a skit or a play in front of family and friends. Here are several selections they may enjoy, or have them try writing their own for a lot of fun.

Why do turkeys always gobble?
Because they have not been taught good table manners!

Costumes: Putting together an authentic wardrobe

Be sure to dress the part! Make your own costumes for an authentic play. Your outfit can be as simple or as elaborate as you wish to make it. Here are some websites for mom or dad to help you in creating your own indian wardrobe. Don't be afraid to use your imagination and create your own unique designs. After all, the indians made use of the materials they had available to them...

This is America Charlie Brown, The Mayflower Voyagers Part 1

This is America Charlie Brown, The Mayflower Voyagers, the first part of the first episode of the mini serie: this is America Charlie brown (Uncut Version)

Or you can select pre-made costumes like these:

Create a Diorama Pumpkin

Make a papier-mâché pumpkin, cut them open and insert a Thanksgiving scene inside. They last for years!


Start by blowing up an oval or round balloon. Next, cover the balloon with newspaper dipped in liquid starch; remove excess starch before applying it to the balloon. Apply multiple layers (3-4) of papier-mâché so that a hard shell can be formed. Don't forget to create a stem!

Stand your balloon on a flat surface so that the bottom will become flattened. When it dries (after a couple of days), paint the balloon orange.

Have an adult carefully, cut the desired size hole in the balloon with an Exacto blade or other cutting tool.

Creating your scene:

Start by painting the inside to create a background, and then make clay, or wood figures, or cut pictures of thanksgiving scenes from magazines and glue them in.

A pinecone turkey can go inside too!

Online Books, Study Guides and Articles

You will find lots of things to see and do online. Visit the following links to find online books, articles, study guides and more...

What kind of music did the Pilgrims like?
Plymouth Rock!

Math, Crafts and Project Ideas

My Thanksgiving Day Poem

Print, color; then Write Your own Thanksgiving Day Poem.

Thanksgiving Puzzles

Songs and Poems

Books to Read

What happened when the turkey got into a fight?
He got the stuffing knocked out of him!

DVD's to Watch