speech and language teaching concepts for No Turkey for Thanksgiving in speech therapy
Frequent Speech Sounds:

/th/ initial
/d/ initial
/t/ initial
/k/ medial and final
/er/ medial


embracing your culture

Book Details:
Diverse Characters: Yes
Age Recommendation: Elementary, Late Elementary

No Turkey For Thanksgiving

By Jacqueline Jules

It’s almost Thanksgiving, and Tuyet is excited about the holiday and the vacation from school. There’s just one problem: her Vietnamese American family is having duck for Thanksgiving dinner – not turkey! Nobody has duck for Thanksgiving – what will her teacher and the other kids think? To her surprise, Tuyet enjoys her yummy thanksgiving dinner anyhow – and an even bigger surprise is waiting for her at school on Monday. Dinners from roast beef to lamb to enchiladas adorned the Thanksgiving tables of her classmates, but they all had something in common – family! Kids from families with different traditions will enjoy this warm story about “the right way” to celebrate an American holiday.

This unique Thanksgiving book can be used in speech therapy to address comparing and contrasting how others spend Thanksgiving. It is also great for inferencing and predictingDiscover more of the speech and language teaching concepts for using No Turkey For Thanksgiving (also known as Duck for Turkey Day) in speech therapy below: 

Key Teaching Concepts

Narrative Structure:

complete episode

Narrative Concepts:

compare and contrast how each classmate spent their Thanksgiving holiday


order of what Tuyet did over the holiday


Saigon Supermarket (to understand the setting), package, delicious, counter, recipe, rules, grownups, spicy, gathered, blurted


Discuss how to be proud of  what makes your family special and different.
Discuss how it might feel to be different from everyone else.
Compare and contrast how people spend their Thanksgiving holiday.


verbs (linguistic)
verbs (regular past tense)
verbs (mental state)
prepositional phrases


How do you think Tuyet feels when she tells her mom that they need a turkey of Thanksgiving?
Why do you think Tuyet wants a turkey on Thanksgiving?
Why did Tuyet put her wallet away?
How do you think she feels when she is not able to find turkey at the supermarket?
Why do you think they didn’t have turkey at the supermarket?
Why do you think she felt better after she had put the pine cone turkey on the table?
Why do you think Tuyet is walking slowly?
How do you think Tuyet will feel about sharing about what she ate on Thanksgiving with her class?
Why do you think Tuyet’s eyes were full of tears?
How do you think Tuyet felt when other classmates shared what they ate for Thanksgiving?
Why do you think Tuyet wanted to call Thanksgiving, Duck Day?


What do you think Tuyet needs to talk with her mother about?
Do you think Tuyet will use her money to buy a turkey at the market?
How do you think Tuyet will feel about eating duck?
How do you think Mrs. Cook will feel about Tuyet eating duck on Thanksgiving?

Problem Solving:

Tuyet’s family plans to have duck instead of a turkey for their Thanksgiving meal. Tuyet informs other family members about this plan but is discouraged when no one else seems to be concerned about the fact that they do not have turkey. Tuyet decides that she will use her own money to buy a turkey for Thanksgiving, but the store doesn’t have a turkey. Tuyet then comes to realize the true meaning of Thanksgiving.

If you are interested in seeing other Thanksgiving books in therapy, check out the Seasonal Narrative Teaching Points Book List for a printable copy.