Thanksgiving is a special holiday for many families—and with good reason.
It is when everyone expresses gratitude and spends time with their loved ones while sharing a hearty meal.
Not only is the holiday fun, but you can also use it as the perfect chance to teach your children about the reason for the holiday: gratitude.
Ways to Teach Your Children about Thanksgiving
Every parent wants to raise kind and loving kids, and it is through practicing gratitude that your little ones get to learn these qualities.
Teaching your kids about the essence of the Thanksgiving holiday is usually challenging as it is an abstract concept for them.
However, they must learn about it as it makes them less entitled and more empathic towards people around them.
Here are seven ways to ensure your little ones learn about the Thanksgiving Holiday:
1. Shift the Focus
As parents, you know that several things are clamoring for your kid’s attention — television, games, and friends, to name a few.
Hence, make an intentional effort in redirecting their child’s attention towards the holiday festivities.
By prompting questions that help them share their thanksgiving experience, you increase their emotional capacity for appreciation.
2. Allow Children to Explore the Story
Rather than telling children what to think, find Thanksgiving books that help them learn about the holiday.
Reading with your kids is essential as it gives them a different perspective from their normal world.
Books also make it easier for children to learn about Thanksgiving through pictures and storytelling.
As you read, ask them if they understand the author’s message and guide them through their responses.
3. Make a Gratitude Collage
A gratitude collage is the best visual to help your child see the goodness in their life.
To create, get a few printed photos and catalogs, and have your little one select the items they appreciate and are grateful for in their lives.
As they point out, you can help with the cutting while learning what is important to them.
4. Cultivate a Family Focus
A faster way to teach your kids about this holiday is to personalize it for your family.
What does your family love about Thanksgiving? How do your loved ones’ express gratitude?
Are there things you want to remove or add to the holiday to make it a family tradition?
There is no time to answer these questions and simplify your plans, so your children are carried along and have fun.
5. Show Gratitude
Showing your child how grateful you are for them is the perfect way to teach them how they should emulate Thanksgiving.
When you let children know how much they mean to you, it models a practical example of what it feels like to appreciate someone.
Children learn from their parents, so they will likely emulate and start portraying your habits.
6. Donate with Your Children
Making a point to give out used and grown-out clothes makes a huge difference in your child’s thanksgiving experience.
Help them sort out their things and put aside something that might make another little child happy or that another child could use.
Not only will this help organize their wardrobe, but it to instill a sense of generosity and separation of happiness and things.
Also, they learn to let go of some unimportant things and give at the same time.
7. Have Fun Together
What better method to teach your child about the Thanksgiving holiday than to give them a fun reason to express gratitude?
After the festivities and food are eaten, take advantage of the time and bond with your extended family.
Spend time making memories by either organizing a family game, taking a drive to look at holiday decorations, or playing a board game.
How to Have a Fun Thanksgiving with Kids
Apart from food, Thanksgiving activities are very important to keep everyone including the kids, entertained.
There are several family-friendly, fun-filled Thanksgiving games and crafts for kids of all age groups to help pass the time before dinner is served.
Here are five of these activities listed below:
1. Thanksgiving Finish My Phrase Game
In this guessing game, two children are required.
One child serves as the answer key and fills in the Thanksgiving phrase, while the other tries to correctly get each phrase to match the answer key.
2. Turkey Bowling Game
Turkey Bowling is a combination of both craft and game.
It allows the children and your guests to decorate their turkey pins from plastic cups.
After the decoration, each player is to knock them down to be declared a winner.
3. Gratitude Box Game
Make gratitude game boxes and fill one with Thanksgiving treats while the rest are kept empty.
Ask the kids to pick a box and punch while saying things they are thankful for in their lives.
If they punch the box containing the treat, they get to eat it and declare the winner of that round.
Everyone takes turns punching the boxes till they all receive a Thanksgiving treat.
4. Feed The Turkey Game
Another way to keep children entertained and busy without disturbing the adults is with this game.
Feed the Turkey game involves keeping balls inside the plastic bottle that are decorated to resemble a turkey.
5. Spin-The-Pie Game
To make this Thanksgiving game, divide a paper plate into six sections and write on each section: Family, Friends, Travel, Home, Pets, School.
Attach a wheel to the plate with a gold brad, and spin the circle.
Ask each child to share a memory depending on the segment that the wheel stops.
There is no exact way to teach your children about Thanksgiving as every family and child have different traditions and behaviors.
But regardless of how your family practices this holiday, one thing is certain — everyone needs a reason to appreciate the good things they have.
Everyone needs a moment to reflect on the year behind them and the Thanksgiving holiday provides the perfect avenue for that.
Hence, when teaching your children about Thanksgiving, give an easy-to-understand approach to get them interested in the holiday.