Engaging Thanksgiving Math Activities

Thanksgiving math activities that keep students engaged. These rigorous digital and print escape rooms are the perfect standards-based math activity to help keep kids focused as the holidays approach.
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Kiersten Williams

Creator & Author

The countdown to Thanksgiving break is on and it is getting more challenging by the day to keep students focused and engaged. Teachers have survived the first months from school, and they are probably looking forward to the coming days off just as much if not more than their students. If your class is desperate for a change of place from the same old worksheets, then try an escape room to shake things up!

Thanksgiving escape room locked ovenThe Great Classroom Escape’s Thanksgiving themed escape rooms are

🦃 Easy to implement

🦃 Self-checking (digital versions)

🦃 Available in digital format with optional printable versions or supplemental printable pages

🦃 Great for practice and review

🦃 Perfect for encouraging collaboration

🦃 Ideal for partners or small groups, but can be completed as a whole class or by students individually 

Escape rooms are a great way to “trick” students into completing rigorous, standards-based math activities. The Great Classroom Escape has two different Thanksgiving math escape room themes.

  • “Operation Unlock the Oven” challenges students to solve puzzles as they race to keep Thanksgiving dinner from burning. This is one of our most challenging escape rooms and versions are available for 3rd-6th grade. This escape room theme includes both digital and print versions. 
  • In “The Tricky Turkeys,” your class finds themselves locked in a barn by a very tricky group of turkeys. This theme is available for 2nd and 3rd grades and includes printables that are designed as a supplement to the digital escape room.


I’ve heard from many teachers that they are intimidated by the thought of using escape rooms in their classrooms. The online versions of these breakouts all have a click & go option that requires no prep. They can be completed by anybody with an internet-connected device and a browser. The puzzles are designed to be challenging (that’s sort of the point of an escape room), but the online form will give students hints and help guide them through the fully-automated and self-checking process. “Operation Unlock the Oven” has a few challenging puzzles for each grade level. Sometimes it’s hard for teachers to stand back and let students struggle. I encourage you to do this though as seeing that Aha! moment is so worth it. Working through a puzzle with a group encourages communication and collaboration, and allows students to think outside of the box. So, don’t be too quick to jump in and rescue students! Let them puzzle through the problems and work together to find solutions.

A wide variety of skills-based escape rooms are available with both holiday and non-holiday themes for grades 2-7. So, if you don’t have time for a math escape room before Thanksgiving, you can always try a fractions breakout, or help the snowman escape the snow globe. Check out all of The Great Classroom Escape’s math activities!

Thanksgiving escape room puzzle example the great classroom escape case of the tricky turkeys

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