*The twins are 22 months actual, 20 months corrected.
Now that Halloween is over (sniff!), it’s time to move on to Thanksgiving! I spent this afternoon stuck at home with two sniffly little ones, but we still managed to have some fun in the spirit of the holiday with this colorful turkey activity. Follow along and see how to make your own!
First, I dug out half of a styrofoam ball leftover from an octopus activity from our ocean unit. Ignore the big holes…they were made for octopus legs 😉 I also found five very skinny colorful dowel rods in a package of assorted rods that I bought at Walmart (also used in our “fine motor fun with a cardboard box” post).
I stuck the rods across the ball at regular intervals to form the turkey’s tail feathers. Later on (after learning the hard way) I went back and added a drop of hot glue to secure each one.
Next, I used a couple of spare brown paper lunch sacks to cover the ball and act as the rest of the turkey’s feathers.
For the turkey’s head, I settled on this brown seed pod from some fall potpourri that happened to be on my counter in a bowl. You could really use anything you wanted here, it isn’t central to the activity.
I glued on some google eyes, a red wattle made of a scrap of craft foam, and a felt mouth, and my turkey came to life!
Here is how he looked so far. His feathers are a little sad, huh?
This was the fun part! I grabbed my two snotty, droopy-eyed babies, a bowl of colorful wooden beads left over from a recent project, and a healthy handful of kleenex, and let them have at it!
I loved watching the twins try to master this activity. Threading the beads onto the wooden dowels was just difficult enough for them to really work hard at it, but not too hard that they totally gave up.
Mimi is staying with us since my husband is out of town, and she helped the babies with their first few beads. All they needed was a little encouragement and to be shown how to find the holes and position the beads so they would slide over the dowels.
After Syd practiced with Mimi a few times, she took a big breath, said “O-Kay!” very importantly, and proceeded to do the rest herself. So grown up!
And here is the finished turkey!
We played with this twice today and I’m confident we will be pulling it out several more times before the holiday arrives. There are lots of ways that this activity could be expanded upon…use your imagination to come up with alternate materials for both the dowel rods (think spaghetti noodles) and beads (penne pasta, cheerios, etc.). This could be used to work on color recognition, following directions, sorting, counting/math activities, and whatever else you can dream up! To up the fine motor difficulty, try having your little ones use tongs or large tweezers to place the beads on and off the dowel rods. If you have variations on this activity, I’d love to see them!
*This post has been shared at some of these fabulous link parties.