handprint turkey activity idea and book

November 5, 2009

Setting the Turkeys Free by W. Nicola-Lisa, Illustrated by Ken Wilson-Max

A little boy is making hand print turkeys while his puppy watches. He explains how to make the turkey, "First I dip my hand in paint. Then I spread my fingers apart and press my hand onto a big piece of paper." etc. VERY fascinating to a painting-obsessed two-year old who has never yet made a hand print turkey.

The boy makes a bunch of turkeys, decorates them with glitter and feathers, and then makes a pen for them out of Popsicle sticks. Foxy the fox comes sneaking up and the boy makes rocks to keep the fox out of the pen by pressing his fist into the paint and then pressing down onto the paper. At one point, I looked at Juliet and she seemed sort of scared--a look of horror was on her face as she watched the fox creeping up on the turkeys, but the fox is foiled in the end and the turkeys live another day.

Activity Idea:
So, this is not very original, but it so much fun that we have already made THREE different sets of turkeys with paint (and one particularly creative set using hand lotion and my full-length mirror) because Juliet has asked to "make turkeys" EVERY DAY since reading this book. (The lotion/mirror version was totally concocted by my two-year old while I was getting dressed one morning. She did not seek pre-approval beforehand.)

What you need:
glitter, sequins (anything you want to use to decorate the turkeys)
popsicles sticks

I squirted some paint onto a paper plate and let Juliet place her hand in it, then showed her how to press it carefully onto the paper, fingers spread to make a turkey. She quickly began making more and more. We didn't have any toothpicks on hand, so I just drew on the legs with some glitter glue I had. It worked fine. You could even use a marker to draw them.

Then we used glue to press on tail feathers and sprinkle glitter and some star confetti onto them. In the book, the boy makes a pen out of popsicle sticks, but we didn't do that part because Juliet really only wanted to make turkeys and rocks.
Here's a close-up of some of Juliet's creations.
I really like this one.
Funny story about this one (below): We glued a feather on it, but the next morning, when we looked at the painting, the feather was gone! Juliet asked me where it was and I said, "Uh-oh. Do you think Foxy the fox came and took it?" Hers eyes got wide and then she said, "No. Not foxy the fox." So, I thought about it for a minute--I honestly had no idea where it went and then our cat, Penny, walked by. Considering we don't have any foxes roaming through our house, it HAD to be the cat.

I told Juliet that Penny probably took it and she proceeded to interrogate the kitty as to the wherabouts of the missing feather. We later found it and Juliet glued it back onto her turkey. Case closed.
Anyone else have any fun turkey activity ideas or books to suggest? Leave a comment and let me know! I'm linking up with A Mommy's Adventure--be sure to check out her site for more great stART projects!


Michelle said...

So cute, I can't wait to check that book out at the library!!! Thank you for linking up :0)

An Almost Unschooling Mom said...

That book looks great - I hope our library has it. We read A Plump and Perky Turkey this week - and also linked it to the stART page.

And, a few days ago, we made a turkey tree - a place to put our handprint turkeys, as we count down to Thanksgiving.

We haven't made any turkeys with paint though - but it looks like something the little ones would really enjoy.

The Activity Mom said...

Those turned out great! =)

Ticia said...

There was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Pie.
Fun book.

Jenny said...

Those are so cute! LOL about the missing feather. Our cats have been known to steal feathers and pom poms from our crafts too!

Adriana said...

So sweet! I love hand print projects!

Jackie said...

I have never read that book, but am going to have to find it. I love your handprint turkeys that you made to go with the book!

sbswtp said...

Great project and I love the story of the cat interrogation :) I think we will be doing Turkey handprints next week...this week we did leave handprints :)

Ana said...

Sounds great, my sister was asking me about ideas just yesterday I'm passing the link to her :)

Raising a Happy Child said...

This book sounds like a perfect Thanksgiving read and an art project combined. I love your turkeys and the story of a lost feather. Anna was also really scared about Swiper the Fox when she first got to know him. Didn't care to watch Dora for a few months :)

Jeanette said...

Cats, gotta love 'em! :-)
I am not familiar with this book but it sounds like something my son would enjoy. I will have to see if I can track down a copy.

Brimful Curiosities said...

Love the glittery turkeys. I'm sure my kids would like reading about the fox and turkeys and of course I want to see what happens myself!

Your cat's name should be Foxy Loxy not Penny!

oh amanda said...

So fun! I need to do this with Lydia.

Cassie said...

What great ideas! I love your blog!

Z-Kids said...

These are great!

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