Thanksgiving Day provides a wonderful opportunity to point out evidences of God’s goodness, provision, and grace to our children. So this Thanksgiving Day, consider some creative ways to focus on God’s goodness from which expressions of thanksgiving and praise can flow from young and old alike. Here are a few ideas to get your creative juices flowing:
- Read a children’s book together that commemorates the historical holiday from a distinctly Christian perspective. For example, Squanto and the Miracle of Thanksgiving by Eric Metaxas.
- Assign each member of the family to read a “thanksgiving” verse before the meal. Example of verses: 1 Chronicles 16:8-9; Psalm 7:17; Psalm 79:13; Psalm 86:12-13; Psalm 100:4-5; Psalm 106:1; Acts 17:24-25; 1 Corinthians 15:55-57; Philippians 4:6-7; Colossians 3:15-17; 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18.
- Have the children make special placemats for the Thanksgiving meal that include a Bible verse (from the list above).
- Make a thanksgiving collage: Give the children old magazines, calendars, family photos, etc. Have them cut out pictures that represent things for which we should be thankful to God. Glue the pictures onto a large piece of poster board. Use a verse such as Psalm 107:1 as the title of the poster.
- Before eating the meal, sing the Doxology or another hymn together.
- Give each member of the family an index card. Have them write or draw something for which they are thankful to God. Fold the index cards in half when completed and place them in a large bowl. Pass the bowl around and have each family member pick a card from the bowl and read or display picture. Talk about how good God is in providing each example, and then see if people can guess who created each card.
- Read and talk about a historical formation of the holiday, such as President George Washington’s or Lincoln’s Thanksgiving Proclamations.
Do you have a family tradition or an additional activity to share? Leave us a comment. We would love other readers to benefit from your ideas.