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Monday, November 29, 2010

T is for Thanksgiving!

I decided that if we had to go to school on the Monday and Tuesday before Thanksgiving while our neighboring counties did not, we were going to have fun!

There's not much time in the curriculum for learning about Pilgrims and Native Americans and other random Thanksgiving facts, so why not devote 2 days to it?

We read about the history of the first Thanksgiving feast which really wasn't called that after all. It was called the harvest feast. Did you know there was lobster and popcorn at this feast? I'm going to make sure someone in my family is told to bring that to Thanksgiving next year (not me!).

We also read how the men got to eat and play games while the women had to cook and clean and serve and take care of the kids. We learned that the children had to eat standing up and couldn't speak until spoken to (gasps).

We learned that the children had to forage for berries and nuts, so we went outside and tried it for ourselves.

I gave them 3 minutes to gather as many acorns as they could.

Then, they had to put them into groups of 10 to count.

Some of them had very interesting foraging techniques.

 There was the "throw everything you can scoop up with your hands into your shirt then pick out the acorns later" technique.

And the "grab some, throw them on the sidewalk for safety and go back for more" technique.

And of course the "bring them to the sidewalk in pre-counted groups of ten so I don't have to count them later" technique.

None of them thought it was funny when I pretended to be a hungry squirrel. Or a tornado. Or just myself.

So we went inside to do some arts and crafts. Despite what some of you think (Dad) we did not actually have time to trace our hands and make turkeys.

Instead we made "I am thankful for..." wreaths. We were learning about the suffixes -ful and -less and I thought "I am thankless" wreaths were not appropriate.

This one got a bad grade because they forgot to add "my teacher". That thankLESS little darling...

We read another story about what the actual trip on the Mayflower was like. We learned that the only thing they had for almost three months was hard biscuits, moldy cheese, dried beef, and water.

The week before, I told my class that I would be bringing in some food so we can have a "mini meal" of our own. We even made a menu of food we would have. After reading this story, I told them I decided to bring beef jerky, old biscuits, bleu cheese, and maybe they could have a sip of water from the water fountain.

I said that they all had to eat standing up and not talk unless an adult talked to them first. They did not find this funny.

One little wiseguy suggested the girls serve the boys. The girls did not find this funny.

But it turns out that our mini-meal was "delicious", "the best thing ever!", and "sooooo awesome!".

The menu:
Turkey (roll-ups)
Mashed Potato(chip)s
Green (jelly) beans
Cranberry (soda)
Mini pumpkin pies
Mini crescent rolls
Mini carrots
Gingerbread marshmallows that some one's grandmother sent in

I sent them to P.E. and they promised me they wouldn't get sick.

You can probably see why I needed that 5 day break. Only one change next year...we WILL make those hand print turkeys!

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