In American History, Thanksgiving Day is the day that the Pilgrims met the helpful Native Americans (Indians) and give them food and showed them the different farming techniques. Let’s teach your children about the Native Americans on this special day by making Native American themed crafts with them. Example of crafts include an Native American Indian Doll, Native American Indian Rattle, Native American Tepees, Native American Indian Headdress, Native American Totem Poles, and Native American Dream Catchers.
These crafts will not only keep little ones busy but will also help them learn about the rich culture of the Native American tribes
9 Native American Crafts for Kids
Adorable and fun filled hands-on craft activity by funhandprintartblog.com to introduce kids to Native Americans with colors
Tepees are dwellings of the indigenous people made using animal hide or canvas
Traditionally the dream catcher is designed to snare bad dreams in its web while allowing good dreams to pass right through. Although the traditional dream catcher is made out of wood, sinew, and other natural materials, kids can make a simple version from some basic household supplies. This super simple dream catcher is made from paper plate and other easily available materials.
According to NativeLanguages.org, the Hopi Indians made Kachina dolls to represent the lives of their spiritual or religious icons. Some of the icons they represent are the singer, the buffalo, the badger, the ogre, the hunter, the rainbow, the eagle, and the sun. The adults in the tribe used the Kachina dolls to teach the children about their culture and religion; as a result, Kachina dolls were not toys.
According to Indians.org, the traditional feathered headdress could be many different colors and feature all kinds of designs. Among the Sioux, the culture thought to have originated the headdress, wearing it signified great power within the tribe. Feathers, sequins, beads, etc are generally used to adorn the headgear
There are various types of rattles used to make music during ceremonies and social gatherings. Bark rattles, turtle- shell rattles, and gourd rattles are of the oldest style. Today cow horn rattles have replaced the bark rattles, however, the turtle shell and gourd rattles continue to be used in sacred of ceremonies by some Native groups.
Many Native American Indians expressed themselves with their artwork carved into totem poles.The raising of a totem pole is a big celebration among the Indian tribe. Carvings will represent the tribal nation and will convey the tribesâ history, tradition, and folklore. Many times the story of a totem pole will be passed down from generation to generation.
Traditionally Rain sticks were made out of hollowed and dried cacti which had their exterior thorns removed and hammered back in. Small lava pebbles were inserted, the ends covered with wood, and when the tube was rotated they cascaded over the thorns creating a lovely rain- like sound. They were then used to call upon the gods to provide rain in what were very dry climates.
Making a rainstick is easy to do and great to explore sounds. For kids, you can just fill the tube with rice, beans, pebbles, coins and some small foil balls–this gives the different sounds wanted to mimic rain.
The Native Americans liked to wear various items of jewelry like necklaces, earrings, bracelets, rings.These were made from naturally occurring materials such as various metals, hardwoods, vegetal fibers, or precious and semi-precious gemstones; animal materials such as teeth, bones and hide; or man-made materials like beadwork and quillwork.
This could be a Thanksgiving craft or go with a Jamestown unit or Mayflower unit
Suggested reading –
- Native American Facts for Kids
- Native Americans in the United States – Wikipedia
- Native American Cultures – History Channel
- History of the Native Americans – Indians.org
I hope some of these crafts inspire you to try before Thanksgiving.
Dont forget to check out our very popular post – Last minute Thanksgiving Ideas