Around the World: Thailand Unit Study

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Hi everyone! We completed our third country study, Thailand, 2 weeks ago and I am finally getting around to sharing all the fun things we read and did together. If you are unfamiliar, we are studying different countries around the world this year, spending 2 weeks on each country. You can see my first 2 posts/countries below that we completed to see how, and the order in which, we complete these studies.

Around the World: China Unit Study

Around the World: Japan Unit Study


Excuse the misspelling of Thailand in the notebook, totally missed it, but fixed it now 😊

We always begin our studies of a new country by looking at the book Maps, and DK Countries of the World. My kids painted the flag of Thailand (printable from the Waldock Way- Traveling the World,) and colored/labeled a map of the country in their notebooks. The outline of each country is provided in the back of Around the World with Picture Books. I print copies of the map, cut it out and glue it in their notebook. They label the major rivers, famous landmarks, capital and other large cities, and the surrounding countries or oceans. We also always read about a child from that country in the book Children Just Like Me. (My kids favorite part!)

The topics we choose to learn about throughout our studies of Thailand were the lotus flower, elephants, and coconuts. Below I’m sharing the books and activities we did for each.


Many of these books, pictured above, are all suggested in Around the World with Picture Books. My kids favorites were Hush! by Mingfong Ho and The Umbrella Queen by Shirin Bridges, though all of these were great stories.

We added many additional books to go with our specific topics of interest that I will share below also.

Read Alouds

We had a couple books going this month and continued to read them throughout our India studies next because they are a little longer than the read alouds I had chosen for other countries.

Our read aloud for the whole family is Tua and the Elephant by R.P. Harris, which is a great adventure, rescue an elephant and get away from the bad guys type of story. My 3rd grader is reading The Girl Who Stole An Elephant by Nizranna Farook, that I also read on my own so we could discuss it together. This is such a good book and had me not wanting to put it down. It would also be great for a family read aloud. The chapters are super short and exciting, almost like a Robin Hood type storyline.

The King and I (the 1956 version) was one of my favorite movies when I was younger and would go over to my Grandmother’s house. I had never read the book before and knew my daughter would love the movie, so I decided we would read Anna and the King by Margaret Landon together and then could watch the movie. We have been squeezing this in to read right before bed each night and are almost done with it.


There are a ton of elephant related picture books out there, but these are the ones we read from our library this time. They are about all different types of elephants; some Asian, African, circus, or wild. How to Find an Elephant by Katie Banks and Ella by Bill Peet were our favorites.

After reading lots of books and watching videos on YouTube we completed this anatomy page of an Asian Elephant; freebie from Thistles & Biscuits. Find it HERE.

Next we did a mixed media elephant art project. I took a photo of the few steps:

  1. Cut a small piece of cardboard out and draw an elphant on it. We used this Draw Write Now book to draw the elephant, and they did the copy work in their notebooks later.

2. Next, trace over the lines of the elephant drawing with white glue and let dry. Adults might want to do this part depending on your child’s ages and abilities.

3. Once dry, cover the entire board in a sheet of aluminum foil, tape down the foil on the back side of the cardboard. Smooth it down and press around the edges of the glue lines so they really pop out.

4. Have your children color around the elephant and add details to the elephant with markers.

The Lotus Flower

On another day we learned about a popular flower of Thailand, the lotus. We read these two picture books and looked it up in our book Trees, Leaves, Flowers, and Seeds. Then we created our own lotus flowers out of construction paper (green) and pink & yellow tissue paper. Click the photo below for a tutorial on how to create these. (We used tissue paper instead of crate paper, but both would work great.)

Lotus craft tutorial linked to this photo

Coconuts and Water Buffalo

To wrap up our studies of Thailand we also learned about the water buffalo and coconut trees. We did THIS tutorial of a water buffalo, looked up some information, and then wrote down what they learned in their notebooks (on the back of their drawings.)

We used this amazing Thailand Study from Thistles and Biscuits to learn about coconuts and their life cycle. This pack has a ton of other great topics to learn about for Thailand, as well as links to videos and music that my kids enjoyed.

To end our studies in Thailand I printed these FREE paper toys and the kids loved them! They color them and then are simple to put together (tutorial videos included.) They had a lot of fun with these and showing other family members how they move.

That wrapped up our Thailand study! Thank you for reading along and be sure to check out our India study that we completed next (it’s up now also!) Since we continued reading the same read alouds, these countries flowed together nicely.

We are really enjoying our studies of different countries and cultures and hope to inspire you with some of these ideas!

Wishing you a great end to your week!

— Lindsay

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