One very fun Thanksgiving activity that supports development in occupational therapy is using Thanksgiving printables to work on specific skill areas and these free turkey templates are just one more. Not only are printable sheets perfect for using at the Thanksgiving dinner table, but kids can have fun working on turkey puzzles, turkey coloring pages, and even using as Thanksgiving decorations. Below, you’ll find some free Thanksgiving printables to build skills!
These printable Thanksgiving worksheets are awesome tools to encourage gratitude and foster learning…and with a Thanksgiving theme! What better way to bring in the season of giving and counting blessings than starting at home?
Occupational therapy crafts are crafts that support skill development through the functional task of crafting. We love to use items like the turkey templates shown below, because you can adapt and modify the craft template to meet the needs of each individual. You can find other Fall crafts here on the site that support these goals.
Fire up those printers, because this round-up has you covered for Gratitude and Learning everyday up to Thanksgiving!
Some of our favorite printable Thanksgiving activities include:
- Thanksgiving word search
- Printable table decorations
- Turkey cut out template
- Turkey feather template
- Turkey crafts (find some great turkey crafts here)
- Turkey worksheets
- Printable Thanksgiving crafts
- Kid-made place cards for the Thanksgiving table
- Printable Thanksgiving coloring pages
- Thanksgiving I Spy activities
- Pencil and paper activities
- Crayon or marker coloring sheets
- Gratitude journal
- Printable Thanksgiving games
- Handwriting sheets
- Trace or Writing prompts
- Pumpkin pie writing prompts
- So many more…
All of these materials are found in the Thanksgiving Fine Motor Kit.
Be sure to add these printable resources to your therapy toolbox and learning fun!
turkey cut out template
We wanted to make a turkey cut out template that you could use with a variety of ages and skill levels. This free Thanksgiving activity includes several turkey printables:
- Several color and cut turkey templates with guided lines for scissor skills. You can use the turkey with the cutting lines that meet the needs of each student on your caseload or in your classroom. Focus on line awareness and visual motor skills to cut along the graded lines.
- Thankful Turkey Craft- Color and cut out the turkey craft template. Then work on handwriting skills to write in something that the student is thankful for. This would go well with our Thanksgiving tree or our gratitude leaves.
How to use a Printable Turkey Template
Not only are they a fun way to support development, you can use these printable turkey templates for many areas of skill development:
- Cutting on lines (line awareness)
- Direction following
- Visual motor skills
- Fine motor skills
- Bilateral coordination
- Gratitude and empathy
- Executive functioning skills
Once you’ve printed out your turkey templates, you can use them in a variety of ways to extend the skill-building:
- Disguise the turkey printable- Glue a variety of small objects on the turkey (like covering them in glitter!) or make the turkey a costume to disguise him into something or someone else. You can also use our disguise the turkey digital activity.
2. Decorate the turkey printable with tissue paper art- Crumble up bits of tissue paper and cover the turkey. This is a great finger strength activity.
3. Dot painting turkey- Use bingo dabbers or the end of an eraser dipped in paint and paint the turkey with dot art. This is a great activity for eye-hand coordination skills, and if you use a pencil to paint the turkey, or cut a cotton swab into half, you can work on developing pencil grasp.
There are more ways to extend this turkey template activity, too:
- Hang the free turkey printable on the wall and use it for coloring or placing stickers on the turkey (pin the feathers on the turkey, anyone?). This is a nice way to work on shoulder stability and wrist extension, which are needed for fine motor control and finger dexterity.
- Use the turkey printables in scavenger hunts and obstacle courses.
- Glue real feathers to the turkey templates to incorporate various textures.
One activity that we did was to work on a variety of fine motor skills using the turkey printable. I selected one of the turkey cut outs that had a thick cutting line.
Then, we cut out the turkey and colored in the sections of the turkey’s feathers and body. Some of the crayons were broken to encourage a tripod grasp.
Next, I placed the turkey template onto a foam board. Then, we used colored push pins (Amazon affiliate link) to match the pins to the colored feathers. This activity encouraged arch development and separation of the sides of the hand.
You can see the final activity in the image and a video showing how to do this craft below.
There are so many ways to use these Thanksgiving printables!
Free Thanksgiving Printables
This free turkey printable is just one of the many free Thanksgiving printables we have here on the site. You’ll also want to grab these other Thanksgiving printable sheets:
Below we have a set of free Thanksgiving printables created into a printable pack that you can use this time of year. To grab the set, enter your email address into the form. You’ll receive an email where you can download the free activities and go from there.
These PDF resources are included in our OT Toolbox Member’s Club. Inside the club, you’ll find a Thanksgiving Therapy Theme with many other turkey and gratitude themed Thanksgiving printable materials. You’ll also find inspiration for Thanksgiving themed, hands-on activities to incorporate fine motor skills and hand strengthening this time of year.
Thanksgiving Printables for Learning and Gratitude!
Grab the Thanksgiving Fine Motor Kit for printable, hands-on activities to support development this time of year.
Colleen Beck, OTR/L has been an occupational therapist since 2000, working in school-based, hand therapy, outpatient peds, EI, and SNF. Colleen created The OT Toolbox to inspire therapists, teachers, and parents with easy and fun tools to help children thrive. Read her story about going from an OT making $3/hour (after paying for kids’ childcare) to a full-time OT resource creator for millions of readers. Want to collaborate? Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.