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Thanksgiving Lessons for Children: Celebrating Gratitude & Family

Thanksgiving is a special holiday. A whole day focused on spending time with loved ones and being thankful, without any of the commercialism that has crept into many other holidays.

But before you pull up to the table to enjoy a delicious feast, consider the opportunities this day presents to teach children about the important values of Thanksgiving, such as thankfulness, gratitude, and family.

Here are a few tips for how to teach important Thanksgiving lessons to children:

  • Talk about why we celebrate Thanksgiving. Connect your celebration to the original story of the fall harvest celebration that brought together struggling, starving Pilgrims and generous Native Americans.
  • Turn off the television. Yes, there are the parades, football games, and specials, but try to keep most of Thanksgiving about the conversation and time spent with loved ones.
  • Talk about family traditions and tell stories. If your celebration involves multiple generations or multiple families, talk about traditions, "the good old days," and your own childhood. Stories teach children about life and history. 
  • Talk about the food. Talk with children about where food comes from and how it was prepared. Everyone can share what their favorite food is and why.

Here are more tips to make your Thanksgiving holiday a success:

Thanksgiving Lessons for Children

Thanksgiving Activities for Kids

Kid-friendly Thanksgiving Side Dishes

Planning a Road Trip with Kids


Source: Bright Horizons