As we leave spooky October behind, it’s time to incorporate fall and Thanksgiving-themed activities into your virtual lesson plans! 

We know it’s not easy to have holiday-themed activities month to month so we’ve gathered a collection of free online Thanksgiving ideas to both teach and entertain your kids.

If you’re looking for printables and in-person activities, see our other blog. Or for all fun and play, check out this blog for Thanksgiving class party ideas.

Otherwise, keep reading!

Whether you need an online social studies, STEM, or writing activity, we’ve got you covered.

online social studies & history activities

1) The First Thanksgiving

Scholastic created an extensive webpage detailing the first Thanksgiving starting with the voyage of The Mayflower and includes comparisons between the Pilgrims and the original inhabitants, Wampanoags.

Students will not only learn more about the Pilgrims’ experiences, but they’ll also understand and identify cultural and social changes from colonial times to the present.

2) Thanksgiving Traditions Around The World

Have your students learn about how other countries celebrate their version of Thanksgiving! 

You can make a simple slideshow based on the article’s information and add a Venn diagram to explore the similarities and differences with your students.

online writing activities

1) What Are You Thankful For?

Thanksgiving is the time to give thanks, so an easy writing task you can give students is writing down everything they’re thankful for and why.

It’s a simple writing activity that has kids both writing and reflecting on positive things during these uncertain times. They can also draw the things they’re thankful for as they write.

After everyone is done, encourage them to share their thoughts and drawings with their classmates. If you have any ESL students, this is a fun opportunity for them to learn more about American culture.

2) Fun Writing Prompts

Give your students exciting writing prompts to exercise their writing and creativity muscles. Here are a few prompts that we like:

  • You can invite 1 person, living or dead, to join your Thanksgiving dinner this year. Who would you choose and why? What do you want to talk about with this person?
  • What is your family’s Thanksgiving tradition? Who typically joins? Your nuclear or whole, extended family? What do you eat? Are there special games and activities?
  • Imagine that you’re the Thanksgiving turkey. You’ve escaped your pen and trotted into the Farmer’s house where you find his computer. You login to Twitter and have time to write 5 tweets. What do you say? Each tweet can only have up to 280 characters!
  • Write the Thanksgiving special for your favorite TV show. What will the main characters do? Write a summary of the episode’s plot.

3) Terminator Turkey & Phonics

This free online game takes students into a fictional universe where the turkeys of North America become super intelligent and plot their revenge against the human race.

On the 400th anniversary of the first Thanksgiving, the turkeys travel through the continent turning humans into turkeys!

Each human has a word and students have to select the correct letter to turn them into a turkey. The goal is to turn all the humans into turkeys with as little spelling mistakes as possible and within a given amount of time.

online STEM activities

1) Gobble Squabble Math Practice

This free online Thanksgiving game tests your students’ math skills. The game format is similar to Pac Man, but when a math question comes up, you eat the “ghost” - who is a chef in the game - that has the correct answer. 

Students can choose whether they want to practice addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, or all.

Make a competition of who gets the highest score!

2) Turkey Touchdown

What’s more Thanksgiving than turkey and football?

This is another free Thanksgiving math game where students can select which math skills they want to practice in which difficulty level.

Then they have to correctly solve math problems in order to make a touchdown.

3) Macy’s S.T.E.A.M. For Students

Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade is still kicking off this year in a safe way. 

Watch the Parade team show how they incorporate science, technology, engineering, art & math concepts to create a magical experience!

There are short videos on inflation fundamentals, balloon design basics, DIY sculpting dough, and building basics.

You and your students can still enjoy the spirit of Thanksgiving with these free online Thanksgiving games and activities that are perfect for virtual learning.

If you’re looking for printables and in-person activities, see our other blog. Or for all fun and play, check out this blog for Thanksgiving class party ideas.

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What is your favorite online Thanksgiving activity?

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