Thanksgiving books for kids share the early history of the United States, gratitude, and thankfulness. Do you know that thankfulness is a habit–something to practice and make a regular part of your day? (Kind of like exercise!)
We practice thankfulness each night in our family prayers. For other people, they might share gratitude at a family meal. The good news is that gratitude directly correlates to your feelings of joyfulness.
Here are books to share with your children that talk about thankfulness as well as the history of Thanksgiving and some funny Thanksgiving stories.
What Thanksgiving books will you include in your celebration this year?
Thanksgiving Books for Kids
Baby/Toddler Thanksgiving Books
10 Fat Turkeys by Tony Johnston
Count and laugh at these silly turkeys roller-skating on a fence, doing a noodle dance, and more.
Happy Thanksgiving, Curious George tabbed board book by H.A. Rey
Celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday with Curious George. He goes to the parade, makes crafts, and gets the table ready for the food.
Sharing the Bread: An Old-Fashioned Thanksgiving Story by Pat Zietlow Miller and Jill McElmurry
The simple rhyming text follows this 19th-century family preparing to celebrate Thanksgiving together.
Elementary Thanksgiving Books
Bear Says Thanks by Karma Wilson, illustrated by Jane Chapman
You will love this story! Bear practices gratitude in this charming story of friendship. Who doesn’t love a good Bear story?
The Night Before Thanksgiving by Natasha Wing, illustrated by Tamie Lyon
I always enjoy Natasha Wing’s holiday Night-Before poems. This Thanksgiving, the family is getting ready for more family and good food…
Around the Table That Grandad Built by Melanie Heuiser Hill, illustrated by Jaime Kim
This Thanksgiving story based on “This is the house that Jack built” poem shows a multigenerational, multicultural close-knit family. “These are the sunflowers picked by my cousins / Set on the table that Grandad built.” It’s a sweet story showing a group effort to get ready for Thanksgiving.
‘Twas the Night Before Thanksgiving by Dav Pilkey
Based on the famous Christmas poem, this twist on the poem shows a classroom field trip to a turkey farm.
An Awesome Book of Thanks! by Dallas Clayton
You’ll love this book– both its message and its illustrations. Look at the world and all that is in it and be thankful.
Turkey Trouble by Wendi Silvano, illustrated by Lee Harper
Get ready for a silly story! Turkey does not want Farmer Jake to eat him for Thanksgiving. So he thinks that maybe if he disguises himself he’ll fool the farmer? The resulting story is hilarious with a perfect ending.
The Thank You Dish by Trace Balla
Older Elementary Thanksgiving Books
Balloons over Broadway: The True Story of the Puppeteer of Macy’s Day Parade by Melissa Sweet
Learn about the man who invented the huge balloon puppets that are showcased in New York City’s famous Macy’s Day Parade. Exceptionally illustrated in collage and mixed media by Melissa Sweet.
Thank You, Sarah: The Woman Who Saved Thanksgiving by Laurie Halse Anderson
Did you know that a persistent editor named Sarah Hale petitioned for 35 years to make Thanksgiving a holiday? And that finally, Abraham Lincoln made it happen? Read the whole story in this historical book.
Squanto’s Journey: The Story of the First Thanksgiving by Joseph Bruchac, illustrated by Greg Shed
Narrated in first person by a man called Squanto, read the story of how he was captured by Spanish explorers then eventually returned to his homeland in North America where he befriends the English pilgrims and teaches them how to survive.
1621: A New Look at Thanksgiving by Catherine O’Neill Grace
I used this book in the classroom to show a multi-dimensional view of the first Thanksgiving.
Thanksgiving on Thursday (Magic Tree House #27) by Mary Pope Osborne
In this early chapter book adventure, Jack and Annie travel back in time to help the Pilgrims with their Thanksgiving meal.
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