Thanksgiving Resources for Homegrown Kids

A postcard sent to my grandfather in 1911.

The holidays are especially rich opportunities to explore culture and history. Thanksgiving, of course, has all kinds of tangents to examine, from food traditions to the impact of European arrivals on Native Americans to the health benefits of expressing gratitude.

And in recent years, technology has exploded what is possible for us to learn about the First Thanksgiving.

For instance, check out the virtual tours available of Plimoth Plantation thanks to a partnership with Scholastic. There’s also a slideshow on the first Thanksgiving. If that’s not enough, be sure to check out Plimoth Plantation’s own online program, Thanksgiving Interactive: You Be the Historian.

We’ll be looking at the above resources this week, having re-read Rhonda Gowler Greene’s The Very First Thanksgiving Day and The First Thanksgiving by Linda Hayward last week. Also and although it’s not Thanksgiving-centric, we’re going to read Frank Murphy’s Thomas Jefferson’s Feast; it looks to be great way to discuss how food customs and options can change as a result of travel and cultural exchange.

I’d love to hear your ideas and book recommendations on this topic here, there or yonder.

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  1. Just found your blog, it is SUPER. Someone added it to my list of Best Mom Blogs and that is how I found you ( Regarding this Thanksgiving post, one thing we are looking for is a good “play” script of the First Thanksgiving that would be appropriate (i.e. short and easy enough) for some 5-9 year olds to act out for us on Thanksgiving day.

    • Thanks, Erin!

      A script could be fun, but have you considered teaching the kids improv? You can find improv games here:

      What’s marvelous about improv is that the core skills (working collaboratively, esp.) transfer to other parts of life.

      More here:

      And some suggestions: create advertisements about Thanksgiving; have the children ask a grandparent to describe what a typical Thanksgiving was like for them as kids—and then the children act it out; have the children play the old “I went to the store and bought…” game but use “I’m grateful this year for…” as the starter instead.

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