Throughout history, people have given thanks – sometimes in joyful celebration, often in solemn, even prayerful, ceremony. With this set of primary sources from the Library of Congress, students can discover historical perspectives on American Thanksgiving holiday traditions. Images and documents for grades 3-12 such as the following provide a window into this time period: Landing of the Pilgrims (Massasoit and His Warriors); The First Thanksgiving, 1621; Sarah Hale to Abraham Lincoln (Thanksgiving), 1863; School Children’s Thanksgiving Games, 1911. A Teacher’s Guide with historical context and teaching suggestions can also be downloaded.
At PBS LearningMedia, you’ll find these additional classroom resources with Thanksgiving themes:
Readers’ Theater (8-5, 13+): This group includes two videos highlighting a third-grade readers’ theater group as they perform a reading of the book “Thanksgiving at the Tappletons” (by Eileen Spinelli) to improve fluency.
GPS: Kinetic Sculpture Challenge (4-6): In this video from DragonflyTV, Elly, John, Nick, and Linnea get help from the MIT Museum preparing a kinetic sculpture for the Friday After Thanksgiving Chain Reaction challenge.