Hand Turkeys for Toddlers: A Complete Guide

With Thanksgiving coming up, you’ve got enough going on as it is—between making a feast and hosting extended family, you’re not in the mood for your children complaining that they’re bored. You might be tempted to let them play on a tablet or watch TV, but what about bringing back a classic from your own childhood? Yes, we’re talking about toddler hand turkeys.

Fortunately, this is a blessedly simple activity: all you need is a few sheets of paper, markers and some child-safe scissors. If you want to add a bit more you can get the glue and go crazy with sequins, buttons, pom poms, stickers or (for the truly brave) glitter. Here’s your guide on how to make a hand turkey with a toddler.

Step 1: Outline your hand

Grab a fresh sheet of paper and a market. Then place your non-dominant hand on the page and draw an outline of it.

Step 2: Draw line to create the feathers

Now draw a line across the base of your four fingers (all except the thumb) to create the turkey’s feathers.

Step 3: Time to color

Fortunately, you’re not bound by the laws of nature when it comes to turkey colors. If you want rainbow feathers or a bright yellow body, go for it.

Step 4: Wings and feet

How is your turkey going to walk? Or fly? (Do turkeys fly?) It needs wings and feet, of course. This is another time where your child can get creative with massive condor’s wings or sasquatch feet.

Step 5: Add the fixin’s

If you have googly eyes, sequins, buttons or other extra stuff on hand, now’s the time to glue it to your turkey. Depending on your child’s age and how much you trust them, you may want to be involved in this step.

Step 6: Gobble, gobble

That weird, red, bumpy skin on a turkey’s neck has a name: the wattle. Add that and slap a beak on that turkey while you’re at it.

Step 7: Festive dress!

An easy addition is a fun hat for the turkey, but why stop there? Your turkey could have a pair of rad, knee-high boots (do turkeys have knees?), an honorary sash (Best Turkey Winner 2021) or a hip vest.

Step 8: Cut it out, or don’t

This last step may require some adult supervision—time to cut your turkey out and let it fly! Or, you can skip this and add a cool background instead.

An optional last bonus step: Your hand turkey can serve as a fun and different centerpiece. Have each child write their name on the drawing. If you’re going this route, you might want thicker material to work with, like card stock.

We hope this guide to toddler hand turkeys is helpful, and that you have a wonderful holiday!

At Magical Star Preschool, our dedicated team offers every child an immersive learning experience. We provide before and after school care with a range of programs to support your child’s emotional, intellectual and social development. Call us today to learn more about our curriculum and enrollment information.

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