With Thanksgiving just around the corner, I figured what better way to teach about the holiday than to dress up as a pilgrim! So, I went to Wal-Mart and bought some solid white and black fabric, along with some Velcro strips and string (all only $9), and began assembling an outfit. The skirt was simple. All I had to do was wrap the black fabric around my waist, just enough to cover me entirely around. I cut about eight inches from the bottom of the white fabric and laid it over the black piece to act as an apron. I used Velcro strips to attach the fabrics together and to hold the entire piece together in the back. As for the bonnet, I cut a semi-circle out of the white fabric, hole-punched two holes and looped string through to be used to tie it under my neck. The shoulder piece was just as easy. I cut a thick “C” shape out of the fabric, leaving enough space for my head to fit through. Again, a couple hole-punches and string to tie it together. Lastly, all you need is black shoes (I wore Danskos) and a black long-sleeved shirt to complete your outfit!
As for the lesson, I tried talking like a pilgrim with a Dutch accent, but it ended up sounding more like a British/Australian accent. A Dutch accent is much harder to do than you think! Anyways, I told the children all about my life aboard the Mayflower and of all the hardships that occurred on our voyage. I taught the children all about where I slept aboard the ship, what I did for fun with the other children, things we had to eat, and of life after we found land. I told them about meeting the Native Americans and of the feast we had with them. The children learned that the feast was for the Pilgrims to show thanks for their new land, new freedom, and new friendships with the Native Americans.
Overall, the boys and girls LOVED everything about the skit I put together! When it came time for questions, every single hand was up! The children were so eager to learn more and more about my pilgrim life. It was so exciting to see how engaged the students were in the lesson. After the questions, we discussed the things that we are thankful for and shared the foods and drinks we usually have at our Thanksgiving feasts.