You are so busy planning the meal that you scarcely have time to think about what to do with all the people – especially young people in your house. Planning ahead is the key.
Set up a small Thanksgiving craft station in an out of the way spot, including construction paper, markers, Thanksgiving stickers or foam shapes, and glitter glue. One idea is to ask kids to create Thanksgiving placecards or placemats for your table. These will look adorable on the table and will be appreciated by family members and friends. Printable Thanksgiving coloring pages are available online as well, and OrientalTrading.com has a huge selection of prepackaged Thanksgiving crafts. Read Thanksgiving Craft Ideas for a complete list of craft ideas.
Whether it is during the day or after dinner, there is probably going to be a time when everyone wants to plop down in front of the TV. It’s a good idea to have a selection of movies available for the occasion. Charlie Brown Thanksgiving is a classic, or read about more ideas for Thanksgiving movies for the family to enjoy.
This American holiday, unique in that it is celebrated by all, is quite simply a time to be thankful. If there is an older child available, give them a large piece of posterboard and put them in charge of ‘interviewing’ dinner guests, asking them what they’re thankful for this year. Other children can help decorate the poster and kids can take turns reading the results during pie. Another thing to do is let the kids help! You can save a lot of trips to the dining room, and make kids feel included in the holiday by letting them carry and/or place the napkins, silverware, salt and pepper, butter or other non-breakable items to the table.
What we should all be thankful for is Google! If you google Thanksgiving games, you’ll find a wide assortment of printable mazes, word searches, puzzles and other activities. Look through a few until you find some you like, then print them for your Thanksgiving craft table. It would also be very easy to create a ‘pin the feather on the turkey’ game (or have the kids create it!).
One more great idea is the concept of a ‘tree of thanks’ where the kids and other dinner guests can add leaves of things for which they are thankful. Whatever activities you choose, be sure to get photos of the kids playing and creating their Thanksgiving crafts, games and of course, the dinner. If you have photos printed for next year, you can have kids create Thanksgiving photo frames as one of the activities