Thanksgiving Turkey Place Card Craft: Fine Motor Activity for Preschoolers

by Carla on November 16, 2009

Creating a thanksgiving turkey place card is a fun fine motor activity which allows preschoolers to practice bilateral and visual motor coordination and hand strength.

When developing curriculum, daycare providers must include age-appropriate activities for young children that develop fine motor skills. This Thanksgiving Turkey Place card craft is an activity that will support a Thanksgiving unit as well as promote visual motor coordination, bilateral coordination, and hand strength.

Fine motor skills are actions that involve the small movement of hands, wrists, feet, fingers, toes, tongue, and lips. In contrast with gross motor skills which involve larger muscles of the arms, legs and feet, fine motor skills focus on small muscle movements in coordination with the eye. Some important fine motor concepts and skills that preschool age children learn to master are bilateral coordination, visual motor coordination, grasp, hand use, manipulation skills, pincer grasp, wrist rotation, pre-writing grasp, hand strength, and tactile awareness.

Children learn fine motor skills through practice. Activities which involve writing, drawing, cutting, stringing, and buttoning are great examples of activities that promote the development of fine motor skills.

This Thanksgiving Turkey Place Card lesson plan includes the preparation instructions, procedure, and materials list for this activity. It also provides age-appropriate learning objectives and a sample of the simple supporting verbal cues necessary to encourage participation and support learning.

Thanksgiving Turkey Place Card Activity

Per Child you will need:

  • Styrofoam ball
  • Brown tempera paint
  • Feathers with stiff quills in various colors.
  • Wooden “spoon” (the type sold with ice cream)
  • Two plastic eyes
  • Red Cardstock
  • Office brad
  • Paint brush
  • Scissors for children
  • Glue

Thanksgiving Turkey Place Card Craft Procedures

Cover a table with butcher paper. Place all materials on the table. Invite the children over to craft area. Explain to them that you are going to create a Thanksgiving turkey place card. Talk about all of the delicious things that are traditionally eaten during Thanksgiving. Help the children perform the following steps:

1. Paint turkey with brown tempera paint.  Allow to dry completely.

2. Glue eyes to top of spoon.

3. Cut out the turkey’s wattle from red cardstock (a heart shape is an easy way to create a waddle) and glue below eyes.

4. Poke spoon (which is the head)  into ball about one-third of the way

5. Poke feathers into styrofoam to create the turkey’s feathers.

6. Using the office brad, attach the Styrofoam ball to a piece of cardstock.

7.  Write a guest’s name on the cardstock.

Fine Motor Learning Objectives

Objective 1: To provide the opportunity to Increase bilateral coordination, hand strength, and visual-motor coordination by squeezing glue containers

Verbal Cue A: Let’s glue eyes onto the spoon.

Verbal Cue B: Can you squeeze a little glue on the back each eye?

Objective 2: To provide the opportunity for increased visual-motor coordination by using scissors to cut wavy lines

Verbal Cue A: Can you cut the waddle for the turkey?

Verbal Cue B: I like how you are cutting the heart shape out of the red paper.

Objective 3: To provide the opportunity for increased wrist rotation and prewriting grasp by using a paint brush to paint.

Verbal Cue A: Can you brush the brown paint on the Styrofoam ball?

Verbal Cue B: I like the way you are painting the ball.

Children in your daycare center will have a fun time creating a cute and colorful turkey place card holder while enhancing their fine motor skills. This activity was adapted from The website.

About Carla

Carla Snuggs has written 88 post in this blog.

Carla is a freelance writer from Southern California. She has a B.A. in early childhood education and a Master of Library and Information Science degree specializing in public librarianship and youth services.

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