November 18, 2010

A Thanksgiving Unit

Studying Thanksgiving during the years we are learning Early American History is a cinch.  It naturally flows from our literature and history resources.  The last time we focused on early American History, we even traveled to Plimoth Plantation near Thanksgiving and toured the historical sites.  We couldn't have asked for a better time to be studying this time period!

However, this year, we are studying the Middle Ages.  Next week, we will take a break from our regular history studies and fast forward time slightly to the 1600's to concentrate on Thanksgiving. 

We will study the history using books like:
On the Mayflower, by Kate Waters
Plimoth Plantation: A Story of Two Cultures, from Plimoth Plantation   
Pilgrims of Plymouth, by Susan E. Goodman
Squanto and the Miracle of Thanksgiving, by Eric Metaxas
The Thanksgiving Story, by Alice Dalgliesh
Thanksgiving: A Harvest Celebrationby Julie Stiegemeyer

We will look at photos from our trip to Plimoth Plantation several years ago and the posters that we have received throughout the years from God's World News:
Do and Don't: Learning from the Pilgrims and Indians
Plymouth Plantation

We will appreciate the art of N.C. Wyeth found in
N.C. Wyeth's Pilgrims, by Robert San Souci

For fun, we will read
Franklin's Thanksgiving, by Paulette Bourgeois and Brenda Clark
Turkey Surprise, by Peggy Archer

We will sing a song Auntie taught us.

It begins with these words...

"Thanksgiving Day is coming
and Mr Turkey said
'How very careful I must be
or I will lose my head.'
The pumpkin met the turkey..."

We will complete our Thanksgiving Tree,
giving Thanks to the Lord
for His blessings. 

Each year, we make the tree differently.  One year it was a brown paper tree with autumn colored leaves hanging on the wall.   Another year, it was a bare stick placed in a crock, and this year paper leaves are hung on this tree.

Finally, the children will enjoy a Thanksgiving meal made lovingly for them while they are dressed as Pilgrims

A Pilgrim boy's hat and Pilgrim girl's coif

and Native Americans.

Moccasins and necklaces of beads or shells

This post has been linked to the Hip Homeschool Hop.
To see how other Homeschoolers incorporate Thanksgiving into their lessons, visit the Hop.


  1. Looks wonderful! We loved those books. :)
    NC Wyeth is one of my favorite artists too.
    Stopped by from Hip Homeschool Hop, hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

  2. Your plans are so thorough and meaningful! We also read The Thanksgiving Story - it's a favorite of ours! Thanks for all of the information. I look forward to using some of it this week!

  3. It's always fun to see what other families are doing for Thanksgiving! Thanks for sharing! I love you book list. Many of those are our Thanksgiving favorites too!!!



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