Photo by Curt Gibbs
Today begins a short series leading up to the American holiday called Thanksgiving. Maybe you've begun your preparations already, or at least thought about them. Or maybe not.
Either way, this series will provide practical steps we can take together to make this holiday more intentional--and more thankful.
Which is exactly what it was meant to be.
This week I'm offering a very simple action point - one that I hope will lend a little morning meaning to your Turkey day, and possibly even become an annual tradition in your home.
Our family does this prior to both Thanksgiving and Christmas. Each year, we buy a new holiday-related book. Over time, we've gathered a nice collection.
The books are typically packed away at other times of the year--so when we bring them out again, it's like saying hello to old friends.
Of course, you can get holiday reads from the library. We do that also, but it can be hard to find specific titles as they often get checked out during the season. Investing in just one or two books each holiday season makes it quite affordable.
I thought I could make it easier by doing some of the research myself - helping you discover titles you may want to explore.
Here are a few Thanksgiving book recommendations:
For 2-3 year olds:
* One Little, Two Little, Three Little Pilgrims by B.G. Hennessy
A gentle introduction for toddlers to the Thanksgiving story. Sweet illustrations give just as much attention to the Native Americans as the Pilgrims.* My First Thanksgiving by Tomie dePaola
This short board book is full of dePaola's classic watercolors and gives young children a very brief overview of the history of the holiday and how we celebrate it today.
For 4-6 year olds:
* The Pilgrim's First Thanksgiving by Ann McGovern
This was our purchase last year. It's factual, but not boring. I learned a lot myself! The illustrations are lovely and not dumbed down (my pet peeve in children's picture books!).* The Thanksgiving Story by Alice Dalgleish
This Caldecott Honor book recounts the story of three children on the Mayflower whose baby brother is born during the sail.* Sarah Morton's Day: A Day in the Life of a Pilgrim Girl by Kate Waters
This series (other titles include Samuel Eaton's Day
and Tapenum's Day) chronicle what life was really like at this period in history. Uses text and photographs to depict a typical day from morning to evening.
For ages 6 and up:* An Old-Fashioned Thanksgiving by Louisa May Alcott
It's the author of Little Women - need I say more?!! If your children listen to chapter books, get this heart-warming story immediately. It's the tale of a family who work together to create their own Thanksgiving dinner when life's challenges get in the way.* 1621: A New Look at Thanksgiving by Catherine O'Neill Grace
This offering by National Geographic combines amazing photography and short descriptive essays with a deeper focus on the Native Americans' side of the Thanksgiving story.
So do a little book research this week (the best kind of research, in my opinion). And look forward to developing a new holiday reading tradition with your little ones!
I'll be back here next Thursday for more intentional holiday plans.
Does anyone have other holiday book favorites to share? Which of these titles most appeals to you?