The season of Thanksgiving is a perfect time to teach kids about gratefulness and books and simple activities are an easy way to get the message across! Here are a few tips in teaching children about giving thanks and resources round-up to help.
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Teaching children about giving thanks
Children can often have a hard time grasping concepts such as showing gratitude, being thankful, etc. The month of November can be an opportunity to focus on practicing gratitude as a family while teaching younger children what it means to be thankful. It’s also a great time to remind older children to show gratefulness and why it is important to cultivate an appreciative heart. And, of course, we adults can always benefit from the reminder too!
Here are some tips to get you started:
- Model a thankful heart and attitude to your family daily. Take a moment to express gratitude verbally to your loved ones. “Thank you so much for helping to clean up the living room, I am grateful for you!” “Your hugs mean so much to me, thank you for them!”
- Let the children hear you thanking God. Talk about how grateful you are for the Lord and His help. If something awesome happens, invite the children to thank God with you.
- Read books about Thanksgiving and giving thanks.
- Start a ‘gratitude project’ together. It could be a journal that you complete together, dinnertime ritual where everyone says one thing they are grateful for each night or a fun crafty project like a thankful tree.
- Pray a prayer of thanksgiving together each day.
- Memorize scripture about giving thanks
Thankfully, (ha, did you catch that? 😉 ) there are lots of resources out there to get the message of gratitude across and plenty of ways to practice showing it. Just get the discussion going in your home and be the example to your kiddos, soon they will follow suit!
Giving Thanks Resources Round up to help:
Thankful by Eileen Spinelli
A very sweet book with many examples showing how different people are grateful. Not just for Thanksgiving, but a great year-round read!
A Very Thankful Prayer by Bonnie Rickner Jensen
Thanksgiving is mentioned in this book, but it also offers everyday things to be grateful for. I love that prayer is the central theme and the illustrations are just darling.
Llama Llama Gives Thanks by Anna Dewdney
A cute board book for little ones, my daughters both love Llama Llama!
Thank You God by Sarah Bradshaw
Another board book, little ones will love the rhymes and the sweet pictures. Teaches being thankful to God.
Thanks for Thanksgiving by Julie Markes
A great family book to enjoy with littles. The gorgeous illustrations are very engaging and your child will want to point to many details.
The Thankful Book by Todd Parr
This one is in our wishlist for this year!
Thanksgiving Printables and Projects
Thankfulness Copywork from My Joy-Filled Life
If you want to incorporate gratitude into your homeschool lessons, this is a great way to help children memorize scripture on giving thanks.
A Photo Scavenger Hunt from Edventures with kids
My older kids LOVE photo scavenger hunts, I could see this becoming a fun tradition every Thanksgiving.
Printable Thanksgiving Tree from Cranial Hiccups
Find a spot on the wall and make a Thanksgiving Tree! Littles will love helping to put the leaves on the tree!
Thanksgiving Jar Conversation Prompts from Inspired By Family
Another activity that I could see becoming a meaningful tradition, make a gratitude jar with conversation prompts.
And last, but not least- My Printable Thanksgiving Journal
I hope these resources help to cultivate thankfulness in your family for years to come!