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Tuesday, November 26, 2013

A Last Minute Thanksgiving Activity for Elementary School Students

If your school is not one that has given students this week off, these last two days before the Thanksgiving holiday can be tough. Here's an idea for a last minute Thanksgiving activity to do with elementary school students. This idea could be applied to any significant cultural holiday.

The pictures we take and the pictures that we spend the most time viewing can tell us a lot about what we like. As a way to get students to share their favorite things about Thanksgiving, have them create some simple picture collages online. You can have your students use pictures of their own or search online on a site like Pixabay or the Creative Commons search engine to find pictures that represent their favorite things about Thanksgiving. Or have them make the collage to express what Thanksgiving means to them. Making a collage of the things that they are thankful for is another option.


Three registration-free tools for making collages.
Fotor is a free tool that students can use to create image collages and to edit images. Fotor can be used in your web browser, as a desktop application for Mac and Windows, as iPad app, as an Android app, and as a Windows 8 application. Fotor can be used without creating an account. With Fotor you can crop images, apply filters, add picture frames, insert clip art, and add text to your images. All of your work can be saved on your computer or mobile device.

PicMonkey is one of my favorite online image editing tools. To get started using PicMonkey you can upload an image by simply dragging it from your desktop to the PicMonkey editor. From there you can change things like saturation, contrast, size, and sharpness. You can then add custom frames and special effects like "Polaroid style" to your images. Want to add text to your images? PicMonkey provides a slew of font styles for your use. And if you have just one tiny part of an image that you want to enhance or obscure, PicMonkey gives you tools for that too.

Pic Collage is a free app available for Android and iOS devices. The app allows you to quickly arrange pictures on a wide variety of canvas designs, add text to your images, and add stickers to your collages. From the app you can share your collage to Google Drive, Instagram, Facebook, Dropbox, and many other file sharing services.

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