Guinness Book of World Records Thanksgiving Estimation Activities

Nov 10, 2021 | Articles, Math Activities

Guinness Book of World Records Thanksgiving Estimation Activities

We sure do love a good seasonal-themed estimation activity! These estimation activities are inspired by one of the most popular books in a teacher’s classroom library: the Guinness Book of World Records. These high-interest estimation tasks combine Thanksgiving food records with mathematical thinking. And estimation activities are a great way for many math-anxious folks to access math: having no exact answer can take a lot of pressure off!

First of all: A guide for grown-ups. 

Focus on problem-solving instead of answer-getting.

Have fun. Follow your child’s (or student’s) lead.

The goal is to engage in a fun, estimation conversation.

Don’t worry about an exact answer! Estimation is all about getting within a range of what’s possible. Don’t stress your kid out.

No Googling.

Onward to Thanksgiving Estimation Activities!

We’ve included links to accompanying articles on the world records and slides to print and use with your child or your class. And folks: Please attribute these activities to the teachers of The Community Classroom tutoring and link them back to our website. We appreciate you sharing our ideas!

Thanksgiving Food Record Estimation Activity 1: The World’s Largest Pumpkin Pie

Did you know the world’s largest pumpkin pie was 3,699 pounds? That got us thinking. If a regular pumpkin pie recipe requires 1 can of pumpkin, how many cans of pumpkin might be in the world’s largest pumpkin pie? You’ll want to check out the photo in this article (and compare the size of the chefs to the size of the pie!).

Thanksgiving Food Record Estimation Activity 2: The World’s Largest Turkey

If the average turkey weighs between 16-24 pounds, how much might the world’s largest turkey (named Tyson) weigh? You won’t believe it (and neither will your kids!). That got us thinking: How long might it take to cook that largest turkey? 

*Please note, no turkeys were harmed or cooked in this math estimation activity. We are having fun in the name of math.*

Thanksgiving Food Record Estimation Activity 3: Pecan Pie versus Mashed Potatoes

Would you rather pay for the ingredients in the world’s largest mashed potatoes or the world’s largest pecan pie? Why? We are talking about over 2,000 pounds of potatoey goodness or 41,000 pounds of nutty sweet pie. You can find both of the world records in this article.

Thanksgiving Food Record Estimation Activity 4: The World’s Largest Green Bean Casserole

Who doesn’t love a good green bean casserole? Well, how about 637-pound green bean casserole? That has us thinking: How many cans of green beans might be in it? How many cans of cream of mushroom soup? How many quarts of milk or pounds of French fried onions? And afterward, how many antacids (Tums!) were needed by those who wolfed it down? 

Be sure to check out the video of the Jolly Green Giant and the casserole in the article above, and the photo in this Thanksgiving Guinness world records article. It is sure to inspire your kids to estimate (and laugh!).

You can view the WWLP News Channel 22’s Mass Appeal segment that features the pumpkin pie estimation challenge below.

Looking for other mathy and fun ideas to try at home?

  • Find the Turkey Launch and Cranberry Tower Design Challenges here.
  • Find a list of recommended math games for family game night here.
  • Find a list of outdoor math games here.


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