This is one of those activities that happened on-the-fly in preschool, as a result of a simple conversation.
It’s such fun when things like that happen, as the kiddos get very excited about the entire art process! Even better, this turkey art is easy-peasy to set up and allows for a variety of learning opportunities.
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Related: Fall Art Projects for Preschoolers
Easy Thanksgiving Turkey Art with Kids
This led to one of the kiddos asking why the turkeys in the book didn’t look scared, “because if I was a turkey, I’d be scared!”
I asked what she’d do if she was a turkey, and she told me she’d run and hide away so she wouldn’t be eaten for Thanksgiving dinner.
This led to a lively discussion about places to hide and what turkey footprints look like. Once everyone had their say, and we’d confirmed what turkey footprints look like, we decided to make silly turkey tracks art!
Materials We Used to Make the Turkey Art
Thin orange pipe cleaners (thicker pipe cleaners work well too)
Orange tempera paint
Brown tempera paint
Add yellow tempera paint if desired, too
White construction paper
Related: How to Make a Turkey Sensory Bottle
How to Make the Turkey Tracks
I bent the pipe cleaners to look like turkey feet.
I made three u-shapes in the middle of the pipe cleaner, then pressed them together. Then I brought both ends together, twisted them up, and bent it at a ninety-degree angle.
Writing it out makes it sound more difficult than it was!
Once I had a few sets of “feet”, we grabbed orange and brown paint. The children pressed the feet into the paint, then had them walk all over construction paper.
Some of the children were very methodical about it, making sure to use two feet and “walking” them across the paper.
Others had fun bouncing the turkey feet pipe cleaners all over the paper.
Once the turkey track paintings were done, I wrote each child’s contribution on their paper.
Some of the turkeys hid in the forest, up a tree, or behind a bush. Others hid in the classroom, while one decided to hide in a volcano (we had a fun discussion about that one, let me tell you)!
Pro Tip: Add a straw to stabilize the turkey “leg” and make it easier for painting!
Related: Corn Mosaics Thanksgiving Art
See the Turkey Tracks Art in Action
Here’s a quick video to show you how to make the turkey art, and take a look at the printable you can use to make all the kids’ artwork into a class book:
Other Learning Possibilities with Turkey Art
There really are a lot of ways to take this activity and make something a little different with it. For us, we focused on literacy, fine motor skills, and fun with creativity.
Here are a few other ideas:
- This turkey art activity is a great extension of the book Run, Turkey, Run! The children’s artwork could be bound and turned into a class version of that book. Be sure to grab your free printable if you want to do this!
- The kids could use the turkey tracks to make patterns with different colors of paint.
- Turkey track letters and/or names would be awesome!
- Bring out some number cards and the kiddos can make the appropriate amount of turkey tracks based on that.
Now that I’ve shared our silly and fun turkey art, what do you think? How would your kids create? Where would their turkeys hide?
Simplify Your Thanksgiving Planning
Save time planning with resources from Preschool Teacher 101. You’ll find a variety of preschool lesson plans, early math and STEM activities, and early literacy ideas. Bonus – they’re all done for you!
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Get Your Free Printable
The turkey tracks turkey art free printable is available to members of Fun-A-Day’s free email community. If you’re already a member, click on the button below and enter your information to get the printable sent to your email inbox.
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Originally published November 21, 2015. Updated with new pictures and a free printable.