Explaining Thanksgiving to Kids

Thanksgiving is kind of a tough holiday for little kids to understand. It’s easy to say “I want to raise grateful children” but it’s a lot harder to get kids to understand what the word gratitude means. Believe me. Eva and I had a long chat about it:

There’s also the history part. Most of us know that Thanksgiving celebrates the first good harvest the pilgrims enjoyed after they escaped religious persecution and suffered a devastating winter. We celebrate their bounty and the assistance given to them by the Native Americans (without which they wouldn’t have survived) but when you try to explain that to kids, where do you start? “Pilgrims took a boat for a long time to get away from England because people were being mean to them and then they were hungry and cold for a long time and when they finally got some food with the help of their new friends they were happy about it. Eat your turkey.”

I don’t know. Maybe I’m overthinking it. If you need help explaining the whole thing, though, here are some resources I found:


Amazon affiliate links:
Little People Thanksgiving Celebration // A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving // What Is Thanksgiving? // Thanksgiving Is for Giving Thanks // The Story of the Pilgrims // T is for Turkey: A True Thanksgiving Story // Kids Pilgrim Hat

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  • Reply Hope at Disneyland

    I love how Eva gave you a whole list of things she’s thankful for (including peanut butter which she can’t have!) and then asked you what it meant. lol I’m glad she threw in Mickey Mouse and cookies too because I’m grateful for those as well. 🙂

    November 13, 2014 at 5:23 pm
  • Reply Amy

    another kid vid I’d recommend is the Mayflower Voyagers segment of This is America, Charlie Brown.

    November 13, 2014 at 9:28 pm
    • Reply Carly Morgan

      I love that one! It’s an extra feature on the DVD I included, but our version doesn’t have it. 🙁 I think it’s such a great way to get kids to understand the story!

      December 4, 2014 at 11:04 am

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