Happy November, everybody! What with children everywhere being in a comatose state from the Halloween sugar hangover and stores trying squeeze every Christmas spending cent out of consumers, I feel that Thanksgiving is getting a pretty bum deal these days. We all remember to overeat and watch football and go to black Friday sales when the holiday is actually upon us, but it can be tough sometimes to remember to squeeze it in to our daily November routine. So I invite you slap up some decorations (I save my kids’ school projects and print out paper turkeys for them to color and hang on the walls- it doesn’t have to be much) and check out this website that scholastic.com has put together called The First Thanksgiving.
First off, this is definitely intended to be a teacher resource. There are lesson plans, classroom activity ideas, lists of books you can buy for your classrooms, etc. Lots of these things are easily adaptable for the home and look like a ton of fun. What is exciting for me, however, are the main tabs on the home page: The Mayflower, Daily Life, The Feast, and Videos and Photos. These tabs take you on an interactive journey to discover the story of the Pilgrims. Take a virtual tour of the Mayflower, learn about clothes, food and chores of the settlers, and acquire some tasty tidbits about the very first feast and what we know about it. The Videos and Photos tab features reenactments and reproductions, and the videos each give the length of the video and the recommended grade level. There are lots of pictures on the site and all the text portions have links that read them aloud to you, so even kids who can’t read yet can engage with the site. I’m excited to share it with my second grader today after school, and I highly recommend it.