Favorite Thanksgiving Books for Kids


The Thanksgiving season is here, and after the meal of turkey, stuffing, and multiple samplings of pumpkin pie, what would be better than snuggling up on the couch with your little one and enjoying a seasonal book together?

Being a second grade teacher for six years, I loved having a wide selection of seasonal books for students that would reach a variety of reading levels and interests in the classroom. Now that I stay at home with my boys, my slight addiction with children’s books has only increased. Here is a list of my favorite Thanksgiving books that discuss giving thanks, gratitude, and gorging on Thanksgiving food!

  1. Thanksgiving is For Giving Thanks– A good reminder that Thanksgiving is more than just turkey! This sweet book is a great teaching tool to help teach young ones (and maybe remind us too) that Thanksgiving is a holiday that is all about being thankful for family, friends, and everything we have been blessed with in our lives.
  2. ‘Twas The Night Before Thanksgiving– This was always a hit in the classroom! A bus full of students go visit a turkey farm and, after realizing the fate of their feathered friends, devise a plan to help save the turkeys at Thanksgiving! Kids will love the playful illustrations and parents will really get into the rhythmic and rhyming nature of the writing.
  3. Thanksgiving Is…– If you are wanting to incorporate more nonfiction books into your child’s reading routine, look no further than the author of this book, Gail Gibbons! This book is a great introduction on the many ways people and cultures celebrate the holiday, including Thanksgiving traditions from long ago.
  4. Balloons Over Broadway: The True Story of the Puppeteer of Macy’s Parade: Is part of your Thanksgiving tradition watching the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade on TV? This darling read tells the tale of Tony Sarg, the genius puppeteer who invented these “upside down puppets” we have all come to love. The vivid illustrations and playful text will surely make this book a favorite on the bookshelf.
  5. Squanto and the Miracle of Thanksgiving: The true story of Squanto, the Patuxet Native American who helped the Pilgrims, is brought to life in this beautifully illustrated picture book. A perfect balance of the holiday’s religious roots and historical beginnings is achieved as the reader not only learns about Squanto’s past before encountering the pilgrims, but the importance of faith that guided Squanto on his journey.
  6. Turkey Trouble: Not everyone is excited for Thanksgiving. Turkey is in trouble! To get out of being the main course of the feast, he attempts to disguise himself in this humorous book kids of all ages will love! We would read this in my classroom, and then students would have an extension activity- “I am not a turkey, I am a…” where they would take a cut out turkey and disguise it! A fun favorite!
  7. Sarah Morton’s Day and Samuel Eaton’s Day: Are your kids interested in learning about what life was like for Pilgrim children? These fascinating books follow the lives of Sarah Morton and Samuel Eaton as they work and play in an early American settlement. The photographs in the book were actually taken at Plymouth Plantation! These are great books to compare and contrast what life was like then and now for boys and girls.
  8. Duck and Goose Find a Pumpkin: Ok, so this is technically more of a ‘fall’ book and not a ‘Thanksgiving’ book, but it is too cute to not include. The Duck and Goose series is a favorite with my two year old. This sweet book will get your toddler giggling as Duck and Goose try to find a pumpkin!

What are your family’s favorites?


Do you have any to add to the list?


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