At Parkland Children’s Academy, we discuss how to teach your preschooler about Thanksgiving in an age-appropriate and historical way, as well as give you some ideas for fun activities to do with your child around the theme of Thanksgiving.
Ask Your Child What They Already Know
Even if you and your child have never discussed Thanksgiving before, they likely already know something about the holiday’s history from other relatives, teachers, or friends. This is a good way to open up the conversation and introduce the Native American perspective of Thanksgiving.
It is up to you how detailed you want to be when you tell your child the story of the first Thanksgiving and the events that led up to it. However, you should be prepared for a barrage of questions that you might not know all the answers to. Reading picture books by indigenous authors together can help you and your child get a better understanding.
Encourage Intellectual Curiosity
Take the opportunity to encourage intellectual curiosity in your child and encourage them to be inquisitive everywhere they go. However, make it clear to your preschooler that while it’s okay to be curious, it’s important to be respectful of others as well.
Find The Right Resources
There are many Thanksgiving books available to help you have an age-appropriate discussion with your child. Make a trip to the library with your preschooler to find some of them.
Consider Traditional Food
Food is a central part of the Thanksgiving holiday for many families, and this can provide a good opportunity to learn about traditional Native American foods.
It may be fun for you and your preschooler to find a few recipes for traditional Native American dishes and ty making some.
You will want your discussion about Thanksgiving to acknowledge indigenous perspectives and be historically accurate. However, this does not mean leaving thankfulness and gratitude out of the conversation altogether. Be prepared to take turns with your child as you share the things in your lives that you are grateful for.
Thanksgiving Activities With Your Preschooler
Thanksgiving-themed activities with your preschooler can be a good way to make learning about this holiday fun and memorable for them. There are many activities you can try together, ranging from artistic to developmental to educational in nature.
As we mentioned above, you can have your child make a traditional Native American dish to enjoy. This will teach them to value other cultures, and they will learn culinary skills while doing so.
You and your child can use feathers to paint with and make turkey art. There are also many crafts you can do with Playdough, such as making a fall-themed Playdough tray with items like acorns, leaves, mini pumpkins, tree slices, twigs, and more. You can also try making a turkey Playdough tray with beads, feathers, and googly eyes.
This is also a great time for activities that will help your child develop their fine motor skills. Your child can make a turkey feather beaded necklace or make Thanksgiving-themed tear art by tearing pieces of fall-colored construction paper and gluing it to a printout of a fall- or Thanksgiving-themed coloring page.
You can also make a Thanksgiving-themed sensory bin for your child to play with. Here are some ideas of what materials to include:
- Cranberries in water
- Silk leaves
- Small pumpkins
- Squares of tissue paper in fall colors
Finding A Preschool In South Florida
Parkland Children’s Academy is a daycare and preschool in Parkland, Florida. Our VPK program teaches language, pre-math, pre-reading, and social skills that will help prepare young children for kindergarten, and it is free for all children in Florida who turn four years old on or before September 1st. It is offered as a 540-hour program during the school year or a 300-hour program during the summer.
Additionally, we offer after-school care for children in grade school, which offers extracurricular activities, homework help, outdoor playtime, and transportation from your child’s school. To learn more about our Parkland Preschool, call today at 954-688-5877.