Make Your Own Turkey Feather Prints

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  • Things you probably have at home:
    • Scissors
    • Glue stick
    • Pencil – MUST have a vey blunt point
    • Print the turkey template – at the end of this post

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Ideal Age Range:

This project involves the whole family, so you can adapt it for any age. Ideal for 3+.

Mess Factor:


Prep Time:

5 minutes – definitely cover your table and get an old shirt or smock for your child. For younger children, you may want to prep the turkey body or feather templates before you get started. Read through everything below and see what works best for your child.

This turkey project is a fun way to expose your child to a different art process! Creating your own feather templates lets them print this turkey (and extras or samples) in fun colors. The finished product is something that you can enjoy for years to come!

Active Instructions:

  1. Print the template (at the end of this post) and use it to trace and cut out the turkey body pieces. Set these pieces aside until needed.
    • You can use any light color for the body.
    • If you prefer, you can use google eyes instead of paper.
  2. Use the feather templates to trace feathers onto the foam paper. Cut several feathers to be used with different colored paint.
    • If this is a family activity, cut one or two feathers for each individual who is participating.
Step 1 – cut out the turkey body pieces using the template

Step 2 – Trace the feathers on the foam paper and cut several for each person (one feather per color you are planning to use)
  1. Draw the feather lines.
    • IMPORTANT – You must press hard with the blunted pencil to make indented lines on the foam, or the printing process will not be successful.
    • FIRST – Draw the line that goes through the middle of the feather. Have your child feel the indented line so they understand why they have to press hard with the pencil. (For younger children, you can have all of these steps prepared.)
  2. Draw the lines on each side of the middle line. Younger children may need hand over hand guidance to press the pencil firmly.
Step 3 – start by drawing the middle line

Step 4 – Add the lines on the side of the leaves
  1. Lightly trace the turkey body onto the bottom middle of the white paper, (see photo), to use as a guide for placing the feathers. (Do not glue the body yet.)
  2. Spread the desired color onto the foam feather with a THIN layer of paint – (too much paint will make a blob print).
Step 5 – lightly trace the body onto the paper (don’t glue yet!)

Step 6 – spread a thin layer of paint on your first leaf template
  1. Place the paint side of the feather face down on the white paper, using the traced turkey body line as your guide. (See the photo below as a guide.)
  2. Rub the back side of the foam firmly. Younger children may need help holding the feather in place as they rub.
  3. Remove the foam shape to reveal the print of the feather.
Steps 7 + 8 – place the feather template to make a print + firmly press down on the back

Step 9 – slowly remove the template to reveal your feather
  1. Continue to make the feather prints using the different colors until the entire turkey body is complete.
    • Tip – Have wipes or wet wash cloth available to wipe fingers as needed to avoid paint smears on the white paper.

  1. After the feathers are dry, glue on the turkey body, head, eyes, beak, and snood.
    • For younger children – you may want to break up the activity and do the body placement later in the day.

After your turkey is dry, you can use a separate piece of black or colored paper that is slightly larger than the white background and create a frame (see the finished sample below).

Finished turkey!

Feel free to get creative with your color scheme. Does your child love a particular character – use those colors as a guide and create a themed turkey. Love PJ Masks? Use red, green and blue for feathers and add a special super hero mask to your turkey. Do you have favorite colors that you decorate with – make a turkey that matches your home’s décor! Have fun!

Turkey Body Template:

Download the template for the turkey body and feathers here:

If you want to pin this project, please use the image below.

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