Use this answer sheet for the Thanksgiving Fact Hunt Questions to assess your students' information retrieval and reading comprehension with compare and contrast.

1. Since the Pilgrims on the Mayflower traveled for months at sea, they needed to have food that would not spoil easily. Name six different foods that the Pilgrims ate on the ship.

  1. Oatmeal
  2. Peas
  3. Pork
  4. Fish
  5. Cheese
  6. Beans


2. The master of the ship needed great math skills in order to navigate the ship. Back in the 1600s, there were no radar or navigation systems. What did the master use to keep the ships on course?

They had to measure the position of the stars and the horizon with instruments like the quadrants and the cross staff to determine the latitude of the ship.


3. The Mayflower wasn't originally built to hold passengers, and because of that the Pilgrims faced many hardships on their voyage. What were three hardships they faced aboard the Mayflower?

  1. The passengers had no privacy and only a chamber pot for a toilet.
  2. The rough seas caused people to be tossed about the ship.
  3. People were seasick and bored.


4. Both the Pilgrims and Wampanoag depended on their environment in order to live. Which items from their environment did they use to create their homes and clothing?





  Woods from trees

  Thatched straw roof


  Tree saplings
  Woven grass

  Animal skins


   Dyed clothing from plant,
   animal, and mineral sources

   Loin cloth made of deerskin

   Deerskin moccasins

   Jewelry (clam shells, bones,
   wood, wampum, and cooper

   Deerskin leggings


5. Name the similarities between the way the Pilgrims and Wampanoag dressed. Name the differences between the way the Pilgrims and Wampanoag dressed.

Similarities: Made by hand; used elements from the environment to create clothing

Differences: Pilgrims wore more layers; Pilgrim clothing was made from cloth not animal skins; Wampanoag didn't wear as many layers; Wampanoag made jewelry from the environment


6. The East Coast of the United States is covered by woodlands, and is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean. How did this location effect what the Pilgrims and Wampanoag ate for food?

Since it was so close to the ocean, they ate seafood like mussels, clams, and fish. The Massachusetts Bay area also provided the Pilgrims with waterfowl to eat. Wampanoag hunted wild game in the woodlands. They ate rabbit, squirrel, turkey, and deer.


7. Children in the 1600s performed chores that helped their families survive. What type of chores did the children complete? Were there differences between the Pilgrims and the Wampanoag chores?

Pilgrims: gathered fire wood; girls were required to "muck" the garden, which meant to fertilize the soil with straw and animal droppings; used a bucket to fetch water to cook and clean with; ground corn into sap

Wampanoag: gathered food; fetched water for cooking and cleaning; buried sacks of corn for the winter; went hunting


8. Why does our country celebrate the holiday of Thanksgiving?

We celebrate Thanksgiving to honor the Pilgrims and Wampanoag's first successful harvest.


9. What is the name of the Wampanoag leader that helped the Pilgrims survive at Plymouth? What was the meaning of his name?

The leader's name was Massasoit, which means Great Sachem or leader.


10. Turkey, mashed potatoes, and cranberry sauce are usually associated with Thanksgiving celebrations today. However, the first Thanksgiving was much different than how it is celebrated today. What did you learn about how the first Thanksgiving was celebrated? What foods did they eat at the First Thanksgiving?

  • They ate duck, venison, seafood, cabbage, onions, corn, and squash.
  • Meals were eaten throughout the colony; sometimes they ate together and sometimes separately.
  • Since it was a two day walk for the Wampanoag to the Pilgrim's colony, the Wampanoag build their own shelters.