Thanksgiving is a great time of year, and a perfect time to incorporate Thanksgiving word games into your classroom activities. You can invent your own word games and learn good vocabulary words that have to do with Thanksgiving.
Before you start making word games about Thanksgiving, consider establishing a Thanksgiving-themed vocabulary list, building it with your students. Give them a starter list, including the common words like turkey and Pilgrims, and see if you can encourage them to build a complex, thorough list.
If they are having trouble, take this opportunity to read a Thanksgiving-themed book to your kids. Encourage them to write down the Thanksgiving-themed words that they hear and once the story is over, use their notes to build a list together on the blackboard.
Here are some great words to get you started: acorns, treats, turkey, vegetables, America, apple pie, harvest, Mayflower, holiday, meal, home, autumn, bake, baste, casserole, celebrate, centerpiece, stir, stuffing, tablecloth, cider, colonists, serve, gravy, ham platter, Plymouth, eat, fall, family, feast, giblets, gobble, prayer, pumpkin, pumpkin pie, voyage, Puritans, recipe, religion, roast, rolls, sail, blessings, bread, canoe, carve, sauce, seasons, squash, settlers, sleep, cook, corn, cornbread, cornucopia, cranberries, delicious, dessert, dinner, Indians, leaves, leftovers, maize, Massachusetts, nap, native, New World, November, oven, pans, parade, pecan pie, pie, Pilgrims, plantation, planting, plate, dish, drumstick, napkin, thanks, Thanksgiving, Thursday, tradition, grandparents, gratitude, pots, travel, tray, wishbone, yams.
Try incorporating Thanksgiving-themed words into all aspects of your classroom. You can make lots of Thanksgiving word games that include this holiday vocabulary on your own. Students will have fun playing these games since they are related to the holiday. Also, with the shortened school week that comes with the Thursday holiday, it is important to consider that games will keep students interested in school even though they know their break is only a few days away.
Have your students stand in a circle all facing each other. One student, the turkey, should stand in the middle. The game starts when you have the turkey "trot" to any student at random in the circle. They say to the other student, "I’m the Turkey on the table and I have apples on the table. What do you bring to the table?" The other student has to think of another Thanksgiving-related vocabulary word that begins with the same letter. If they can’t think of one, they become the turkey. When the student is stumped, offer a word suggestion or two for the next time that letter comes up.
This game builds vocabulary skills and can be a great break from desk work. It gets kids moving around, laughing, and working together. Make sure that you stay on theme, and that students learn new words for food, family, and other Thanksgiving vocabulary.