Keeping Kids Busy on Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving recess for school children begins a week from today in most parts of the country. Unless the time is being spent traveling, it means parents must get creative to keep their little monkeys entertained until Turkey Day.

Whether you need some kid-friendly activities to keep your children busy in the days leading up to the holiday or you are looking for fun and easy crafts for kids to prepare while the bird is cooking, these next ideas might come in very handy:


Give each child a large piece of construction paper along with markers, glitter glue, stickers, buttons, sequins, crayons, fathers, and other embellishments.

Have your kids make a Thanksgiving-themed pictures that include their names. Then, laminate the drawings so each child has a personalized placemat to use on Thanksgiving.


Buy a few small straw wreaths and have children work alone or in teams to decorate them with various accessories. You can use acorns, leaves, fake birds, feathers, flowers, etc. Glue embellishments on the wreath. When you are done help the kids hang their creations around the house.

Here’s another version of a Thanksgiving wreath that is suitable for older children:


White paper plate

Construction paper (orange, red, yellow, brown, and other seasonal hues)

Fall leaves

Crayons or markers


Glue or a glue stick


Cut a half circle out of the center of the paper plate.

Trace the fall leaves on the construction paper, then cut them out. (Have kids draw veins on the paper leaves to make them look more authentic.)

Glue the leaves around the rim of the paper plate.

In the lower portion of the wreath, write: “I am thankful for…” and then let each child write or draw what they are most grateful for.

Have each child write his or her name on the wreath, then hang it up somewhere in the house where guests can admire it.

Related Articles:

More Easy Thanksgiving Pumpkin Crafts

Thoughtful Thanksgiving Centerpiece

Thanksgiving Pumpkin Crafts for Kids

Fall Art Projects Featuring Squash

Decorations Using Acorn Squash

Fall Fun for Kids: Acorn Art Projects

Fun Fall Crafts for Preschoolers: Homemade Trees

More Ways to Have Fun with Fall Leaves

Autumn Crafts for Kids: Fun with Leaves

How to Make a Unique Fall Wreath with Your Kids

Seasonal Decorating-Getting Your Home Ready For Fall

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Michele Cheplic

About Michele Cheplic

Michele Cheplic was born and raised in Hilo, Hawaii, but now lives in Wisconsin. Michele graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a degree in Journalism. She spent the next ten years as a television anchor and reporter at various stations throughout the country (from the CBS affiliate in Honolulu to the NBC affiliate in Green Bay). She has won numerous honors including an Emmy Award and multiple Edward R. Murrow awards honoring outstanding achievements in broadcast journalism. In addition, she has received awards from the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association for her reports on air travel and the Wisconsin Education Association Council for her stories on education. Michele has since left television to concentrate on being a mom and freelance writer.