How to make your Thanksgiving Paper Plate Turkey

How to make your Thanksgiving Paper Plate Turkey

Paper plate turkeys are fun for kids in late November, before Thanksgiving. Kids can give them as gifts to teachers and relatives, or they can be used as Thanksgiving decorations around the house. There are few materials required, so this is an inexpensive way to have creative decorations around the house, and your kids will feel a part of the holiday spirit!


Paper plates

  • Construction paper
  • String
  • Elmer’s Glue
  • Craft eyes
  • Markers

Step One: Make the turkey base.

For each turkey that you plan on making, take a paper plate, and cut out the flat center portion of the plate. When you are done, you should have the ring of slightly curved, ridged plate left. Color this ring with the markers. It is not important to color this ring perfectly because it will be mostly covered by another step in this craft, but it might peek through. Use browns, yellows, and oranges to color the paper plate ring.

Step Two: Make the feathers.

This step allows a lot of creative freedom. Using the construction paper (preferably in browns, yellows, reds, and oranges) you can cut feathers, loops of paper, or strips of paper. If you cut feathers, simply glue them all around the paper plate ring when you are done. Remember: you’re going to need a lot of feathers to cover the ring, so make sure to cut quite a few! If you choose to do strips of paper, you would glue the strips to the ring of the paper plate in the same fashion that you would glue the feathers. If you choose to make paper loops (similar to the loops made when doing a paper chain, but not connected), you will need to use the string to attach them.

Glue doesn’t work very well on the curved paper plate when you are trying to attach a curved strip of construction paper, so this is why the string is needed. Cut strips of string about four to six inches long and run the string through the loop of construction paper. Then attach the loops to the paper plate by tying the string around the paper plate loop and securing in the back with a knot. Although the loops don’t look as much like feathers as do the construction paper feathers, the string sticking out from the back of the paper plate gives a funny wild turkey look.

Step Three: Make the turkey head.

From the construction paper, cut a light bulb shape from orange or brown. Attach this shape to the back of the paper plate loop so that it peeks out to the front through the feathers. Next, attach two craft eyes onto the head. To make a beak, either cut a triangle from yellow or red construction paper or cut a triangle on the uncut corner of folded construction paper. This method will make two triangles attached at an edge.

Glue one of the triangles to the turkey head and the other triangle looks like an open beak! Cut a turkey waddle out of red paper and attach it to the head as well. You can add any extra coloring you want with markers. Now your turkey is done!

Hang your turkey on the refrigerator, from the ceiling, or make several and use them as name cards at Thanksgiving dinner. Be creative!

Hang your turkey

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