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Make a Cranberry Bog in a Cup & More

Years ago, our family enjoyed the Cranberry Classroom in NYC courtesy of Ocean Spray. This was such an immersive and delightful experience. I’ve wanted to recreate it at home ever since. This week, we finally did it! Revisiting our Cranberry Classroom experience, we enjoyed a mini Cranberry Unit Study, made a Cranberry Bog in a Cup, plus more cranberry activities. Here they are!

Make a Cranberry Bog in a Cup


  • Clear plastic cup or container
  • Play clay (or real clay)
  • Small gravel/stones (get from the Dollar Store craft section)
  • Sand
  • Peat Moss
  • Cranberry clippings (in lieu of these, use some thyme herb stems – they have a similar look with their trailing vines and small leaves).
    Cranberries (for accent)


  • Place a layer of clay in the bottom of the cup.
  • Press in a layer of stones/gravel
  • Tuck in your plant trimmings/clippings, root side down
  • Layer over with peat moss
  • Add a layer of sand
  • Sprinkle with a few loose cranberries

Of course, your plant trimmings will not grow in this recreated bog. But, you can discuss as you create your mini cranberry bog in a cup the various ways the layers benefit the plant!

Bogs are generally known for their layers of moss, water, and peat. When young children complete this craft, this is the fact that can be emphasized, even if they don’t quite get all the layering right!

The sand is especially important in the cranberry bog because it resists insects, and in the spring, it sifts down to the roots and encourages growth.

More cranberry activities for Thanksgiving

A fun secondary activity to making a mini bog in a cup is “flooding” a mini bog in your kitchen. This is easily done by spreading cranberries in a 9×13 baking dish. Then let kids pour in water until the berries rise to the top! You can cut open a cranberry and show kids the reason the berries float: 4 air pockets inside the berry help it rise to the surface of the water (And what a great lesson on density could be added in here, right?).

When you’re done playing with making cranberry bogs and such, use your cranberries to bake some bread or muffins.

Then head over to the Chalk Pastel blog and see all my other ideas for celebrating fall and Thanksgiving with cranberries through books, art, and more! Nana has some fantastic art lessons for this time of year, and you will definitely want to check out our favorite fall book: Cranberry Thanksgiving and all the fun homeschool activities you can do around this delightful story. 

Visit my guest post A Cranberry Thanksgiving Book Study for Homeschool to get all the actives and details. (As a Chalk Pastel affiliate, I happily recommend their Clubhouse Membership which gives you access to ALLLLLLLLL the lessons that go so perfectly with just about any homeschool study theme!). 

And now the most important question: Cranberry sauce – do you like the fresh, chunky version? Or the jellied, canned version? Let me know!

Oooh, want to make a delicious fall lunch sandwich? This is probably more appealing to the grown ups but… check out my Cranberry Maple Turkey Sandwich recipe!

A Cranberry Thanksgiving Book Study For Your Homeschool - You ARE an ARTiST!

Monday 1st of November 2021

[…] my kids in creating a “Cranberry Bog in a Cup” craft, where we learn about the various elements that make up a cranberry bog, providing important […]