I love Thanksgiving! It’s the kick-off to Christmas season, you eat lots of food, and my big family always gets together for the holiday before going Black Friday shopping!
Now that I have a young daughter I want to start new traditions and include her in the celebration.
These fun printable Thanksgiving placemats are perfect for kids to fill out and color. I’ve also included 5 ways for you to help get even young kids involved in the celebration and keep them busy and entertained.
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1. Help make DIY thanksgiving decorations
Turn a simple nature walk into a fun fall-themed centerpiece! Kids can pick up pinecones, leaves, acorns, pine needles, etc on a nice walk, or maybe even from your own backyard!
Put them all in a square vase and voila, instant centerpiece your kids can be proud of!
If you live in Southern California like me you may, unfortunately, have to purchase most of your fall nature pieces.
To make one like this you’ll need:
- Pinecones – Buy on Amazon/Buy from Michaels
- Leaves – Buy on Amazon/Buy from Michaels
- Square vase
- Ribbon (optional) if you want to tie a bow
Tip: I used a coffee stir stick to push the leaves down into the vase.
This makes such a pretty centerpiece for your Thanksgiving table or you can place it somewhere else in your home as beautiful fall decor.
Crafts like our Styrofoam turkey or Tide Pod Container turkey are also fun to use as part of your Thanksgiving decor. Make them ahead of time or set up a craft station if you have lots of kids at your Thanksgiving event.
You can even make it super easy and buy some Thanksgiving craft kits if you’re short on time.
2. Printable thanksgiving placemats
Grab these free printable Thanksgiving gratitude placemats for your kids to decorate. They can color one for every guest. Depending on their age they may be able to write the names or else you’ll have to do that part for them.
Each guest can write what they’re grateful for and share it before, after, or during dinner. It’s a great way to introduce gratitude at a young age.
Let even the youngest guests have a turn saying what they’re grateful for, you may be amazed at what comes out of the mouths of babes.
The placemats come in two different designs. Each prints on one 8.5″x11″ sheet of paper.
Printables are for personal use only. All printables on Tot School Resources website are the property of totschoolresources.com and may not be sold, used for commercial purposes, or given away for free on your own website.
3. Set the table
Once they’ve set out their placemats they can help set the table. A toddler may need help but they are perfectly capable of putting a fork, spoon, and butter knife at each place. Just make sure they have supervision with the fork and butter knife.
My kids love to help with whatever I’m doing and already help put the silverware in the dishwasher and put them away when they’re clean! I’m taking advantage of it while they still think helping is fun lol.
4. Create a menu
Make an example for them to follow and then let your kids help create a menu for each guest.
For slightly older kids they can try to write the words, they might come up with some creative spellings! For younger kids, they can draw pictures or just color the menu.
5. Help make dinner
No, I don’t expect you to have your young kids slaving away over a hot stove all day. But, they can help with simple tasks like mixing.
The first dish I remember helping with as a kid was green bean casserole. To this day my cousins and I debate over who’s going to make it, even though we all pretty much make it the same way.
It’s a super simple one as all you have to do is dump several ingredients in a bowl and mix. They can do it on a table away from all the hot things and then an adult can put it in the oven.
They’ll be so excited to help instead of just being asked to stay out of the way.
I hope you have a great Thanksgiving with your family and enjoy the printable Thanksgiving placemats!
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