Thanksgiving For Kids

Thanksgiving for Kids - a list of ideas, free thanksgiving printables and thanksgiving craft ideas for kids

For school this week and next I am studying Thanksgiving with the boys. I have compiled the Thanksgiving lesson plan for the next two weeks to share with those that want to explain and do activities about Thanksgiving for kids.

What is Thanksgiving – explaining it to kids

I have the The Story of the Pilgrims (Dover History Coloring Book) and it is perfect for sharing what the history of thanksgiving is and why we celebrate it. At the beginning of the book they have this brief summary;

“Every November, many people eat a special meal; Thanksgiving dinner. In the early 1600s, some men, women, and children left England to be free. We call them Pilgrims. First they went to Holland. Then they sailed to America. Living throughout the land were the Indians, also called Native Americans. They showed the Pilgrims how to grow their own food. When the Pilgrims had enough to eat, they were very grateful to the Indians. They wanted to give thanks….”

There are then 29 pages to color that cover the Pilgrims adventure, with a sentence or two at the bottom of each page detailing the story. We spend about two weeks reading and coloring through this.

To aid in explaining the history of Thanksgiving I also have two copies of Cut & Assemble the “Mayflower”: A Full-Color Paper Model of the Reconstruction at Plimoth Plantation. It is a rather complex model so I may save the second book for next year rather than make one for each boy this year. I know the boys will enjoy making a model of the Mayflower and I will probably turn this into an entire family activity that we can work on either in the early morning or at dinner time, a little bit each day.

thanksgiving books for kidsFavorite Thanksgiving Books for Kids

Cranberry Thanksgiving – a sweet story of family traditions and judging character – it is not about the first Thanksgiving, but it is a gem I purchased for our collection and we read it every year.

If you sailed on the Mayflower in 1620 …

Squanto and the Miracle of Thanksgiving

The Thanksgiving Story

 

Thanksgiving Coloring and Work  SheetsThanksgiving for Kids - a list of ideas, free thanksgiving printables and thanksgiving craft ideas for kidsThese worksheets were created for my boys to use in the car for our long trip around Thanksgiving, they include a variety of drawing and writing ideas that will appeal to them.

I am quite happy with the coloring pages in The Story of the Pilgrims, however I did find some neat free thanksgiving coloring pages for kids that I will be using. These include:

Thanksgiving for Kids - a list of ideas, free thanksgiving printables and thanksgiving craft ideas for kids{This designed and available from June Pfaff Daley}

{Endless supply of free Thanksgiving coloring pages and worksheets from abcteach.com}

Crafts for Thanksgiving

Toilet paper roll craft pilgrim people – I have been saving our toilet paper rolls and we will make these cute toilet paper roll pilgrims and use them as puppets in our play as we reenact the first Thanksgiving story.  Thanksgiving for Kids - a list of ideas, free thanksgiving printables and thanksgiving craft ideas for kids

{image from FamilyFun}

Turkey Candy Jar – I plan on making these with the boys and having them each chose someone to give it to and we’ll write things they are thankful for about the person (or family) they intend to gift this to on the turkey feathers.

Thanksgiving for Kids - a list of ideas, free thanksgiving printables and thanksgiving craft ideas for kids

{Thankful turkeys – more on the ones we made here}

Thanksgiving for Kids - a list of ideas, free thanksgiving printables and thanksgiving craft ideas for kidsIndian Corn Husk dolls {from spoonful.com}Thanksgiving for Kids - a list of ideas, free thanksgiving printables and thanksgiving craft ideas for kidsIndian Corn Painting {from fanasticfunandlearning.com}

Other Thanksgiving Ideas

The bowl game - a fun game the Native Americans taught the Pilgrims

The Bowl Game – a Thanksgiving game for kids.
We found this game in one of our old Thanksgiving books and have played several times. They say the Native Americans played it and may have taught it to the Pilgrims – instructions for the bowl game are here.

Thanksgiving for Kids - a list of ideas, free thanksgiving printables and thanksgiving craft ideas for kidsTable Settings

Making Thanksgiving place settings out of laminated leaves – my boys love gathering leaves and laminating them preserves the color and makes for a fun and useful project for them! More on it here.

I haven’t captured a picture of it yet, but I love brown paper laid out on the table with a collection of coloring tools – crayons, markers, etc. I have done it several years and the kids LOVE it, and so do the adults!

Recipescranberry bread  - thanksgiving bread recipe based off the children's bookWe tried our hand at Grandmother’s Famous Cranberry Bread, from the book Cranberry Thanksgiving. Our post and the recipe can be seen here. It was a fun and tasty experiment!

Pumpkin shows up in a lot of our food – and the boys are great helpers! We’ve discovered pumpkin yogurt {using our homemade yogurt from How to Make Yogurt} is delicious.
Pumpkin oatmeal is iffy. Three favorite pumpkin recipes for the season:

pumpkin-cheesecake-recipe-3 gluten-free-pumpkin-spice-cake chocolate-peanutbutter-pumpkin-dip-recipe

We have enjoyed trying our hand at making our own butter and applesauce – very pilgrim-ish feeling things to do (though, luxuries for them I’m sure!)

Happy Thanksgiving!

 

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Jessica Lynette