thanksgiving childrensbooks

If I was going to pick just one book to read at Thanksgiving it would hands down be this one because it’s gorgeous and interesting and I’m slightly obsessed with the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. However, when I want to explain the meaning of Thanksgiving to my twins I would start with one of the books listed below.

Thanksgiving is centered around a history that’s complicated to explain to young kids and an abstract idea of thankfulness. I tend to focus more on the idea of being thankful with my kids right now, but even that concept is hard for toddlers and preschoolers and my now kindergartners to grasp.

Involving kids in getting ready for Thanksgiving is a great way to help them enjoy the holiday, but I always love books for starting conversations about tricky topics. My favorites for talking about being thankful and saying thanks are below.

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thanksgiving childrens books

5 Best Children’s Books about Being Thankful

I started the list with a few books just about saying thanks. They are fun and could technically be read any time of the year. The last two are particular to the holiday of Thanksgiving, but also focused on the idea of being thankful and saying thanks to the people in our lives.

1. Bear Says “Thank You” by Michael Dahl

Bear Says “Thank You”, from the Hello Genius Manners Series is full of adorable animals, bright illustrations, and a topic perfect for the 2-4 year old range. In this one “Bear has BIG plans” and he needs mom’s help. This adorable book about a bear and his mom perfectly addresses using the phrase “thank you” in the context of creativity and a warm parent-child relationship. Bear needs supplies for his art project and he always remembers to say “thank you”. The surprise comes at the end when someone else thanks him. Perfect pick for little ones everywhere with their own big plans. Find on Amazon

2. The Thank You Book by Mo Willems

This final addition to the Elephant and Piggie series is all about saying Thanks. Piggie is saying thanks to everyone and everything, but there is someone being forgotten.  The end is a fun surprise. Find on Amazon

3. Bear Says Thanks by Karma Wilson

If you have read BEAR SNORES ON, you are familiar with this delightful series by Karma Wilson and Jane Chapman. BEAR SAYS THANKS offers the same warmth with rhyming text, a glowing cave full of friends, and a wonderful message about being thankful. It is not specifically a Thanksgiving book, but the illustrations have a warm, Fall feel to them and the story feels like an information Thanksgiving. Find on Amazon

4. Thanksgiving is for Giving Thanks by Margaret Sutherland

Now for some more Thanksgiving related books. A sweet book that introduces the basics of Thanksgiving and emphasizes the message of giving thanks. Find on Amazon

5. Thanks for Thanksgiving by Julie Markes

I love the warm illustrations in this story about Thanksgiving and family coming together. This is my absolute favorite Thanksgiving picture book. Find on Amazon.


Thanksgiving {Printable} Activity Pack from Play Dough & Popsicles

Kids in the Kitchen: Festive Thanksgiving Roundup from Crafty Mama in ME

Feed The Turkey High Frequency Words from Adventures of Adam

Pilgrims & the Mayflower {A Free Unit Study Resource Round Up} from Faith and Good Works

Giving Thanks for Nature from FrogMom

Thanksgiving Dressing from Tales of Education at Home

Children’s Picture Books about Turkeys from The Jenny Evolution

Thanksgiving Free Printables from iGameMom

Pete the Cat Thanksgiving Activity from Mrs. Karle’s Sight and Sound reading

Thanksgiving Preschool Printables from Living Life and Learning

Printable Turkey Alphabet Puzzle for Preschoolers from Schooling a Monkey

Thanksgiving Color By Number Pack from Simple Living Mama


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