The Story of Thanksgiving for Preschool Children

by Kelly Sundstrom

In the 17th century, the pilgrims and the American Indians came together to share a meal and to give thanks for all of their blessings. This story can help you and your little ones to remember to give thanks for all of the blessings in your own lives. You may remember hearing about the story of Thanksgiving in school, but now just think of Thanksgiving Day as the time when all of your family gathers around for turkey and pie. When you have children in the house, they may not have heard the Thanksgiving story in preschool yet. You don't want your preschoolers thinking that this day is just about food. Teach your children about the story of Thanksgiving through crafts and engaging activities.

Items you will need

  • Books about Thanksgiving
  • Pilgrim and Native American finger puppets
  • Construction paper
  • Scissors
  • Tape

Story of Thanksgiving Interactive Storytime

Step 1

Check out a few picture books from your local library that tell the story of Thanksgiving, such as "This First Thanksgiving Day: A Counting Story" by Laura Krauss Melmed or "The Very First Thanksgiving Day" by Rhonda Gowler Greene.

Story of Thanksgiving Interactive Storytime

Step 2

Get out a few pilgrim and American Indian finger puppets, and put them on one of your hands before you read the books. You can either purchase puppets from a toy store, or make them yourself using craft supplies, like felt fabric. If you choose to use felt fabric, cut out a strip of felt to fit around your finger, and glue the ends together to hold its shape. Draw a face on the puppet using fabric markers, and glue on yarn for hair and any other accessories you want, like small, colorful feathers. Make finger puppets that look colorful and festive, and that clearly display characters found in the Thanksgiving story. These characters could include pilgrims, American Indians, animals like cows or turkeys, and corn.

Story of Thanksgiving Interactive Storytime

Step 3

Read the story of Thanksgiving to your little ones while you act out the story with your finger puppets throughout the story. If the book you chose to read does not have an appropriate spot to act out the characters, put the book down periodically to recreate different scenes from the story.

Story of Thanksgiving Crafts

Step 1

Gather colorful, fall-colored construction paper, like orange, red, yellow, brown, green and purple to show your kids how to make colorful Native American headdresses.

Story of Thanksgiving Crafts

Step 2

Cut out two long strips from brown or orange construction paper, each roughly measuring 2 inches wide. Tape the two strips together at one end.

Story of Thanksgiving Crafts

Step 3

Wrap the long strip around your little one's head to get the right measurement, and tape it into place to hold the form. Every child's head has a different shape, so you will need to do this for each headdress.

Story of Thanksgiving Crafts

Step 4

Draw out large feather shapes on the other colors of construction paper, and cut them out with scissors. If your little ones want a lot of feathers on their headdresses, cut out several feathers from construction paper.

Story of Thanksgiving Crafts

Step 5

Tape the ends of the feathers along the headband so that they stick up straight.

About the Author

Kelly Sundstrom is a national special needs spokesperson and writer. She writes content for major brands, magazines and newspapers, including Gather News, STACK Magazine, Colgate, Kudzu, LIVESTRONG and Lowe's Home Improvement. She currently has over 6500 digital and print articles in publication. Her awards include the 2012 Skyword High Flyer Award and the 2009 Demand Media Top Content Creator Award.

Photo Credits

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