Thanksgiving Storytime

It’s the week of Thanksgiving, which means Sunday’s storytime theme was devoted to just that: Thanksgiving and gratitude. I don’t think I’ve ever used the same storytime craft twice, but I couldn’t help but use last year’s “Thankful Turkey” craft. They turn out wonderfully and are a great way to celebrate all the things we are grateful for.

Thanksgiving Storytime Lineup:

‘Twas the Night Before Thanksgiving by Dav Pilkey

The famous‘Twas the Night Before Christmas poem converted into a fun and colorful Thanksgiving story where everyone, even the turkeys, find themselves a reason to be thankful in the end. After I read this story we all sang the below song:

I’m a Great Big Turkey Song

(Tune: “I’m A Little Teapot”, By Jean Warren from Preschool Express)

I’m a great big turkey
‘Cause I’m well fed.
Watch me spread my feathers.
Watch me bob my head.
When I strut around
I waddle, waddle, waddle.
And when I talk
I “gobble, gobble, gobble”.
I’m a great big turkey
And I’d love to stay.
But Thanksgiving’s coming.
So it’s time to run away!


Bear Says Thanks by Karma Wilson, illustrated by Jane Champman

The newest title of the Bear picture book series. Bear wants to have his friends over for a feast, but his cupboards are bare. It doesn’t take long for his friends to teach him that he doesn’t need to have anything in his cupboard to contribute to the gathering.

I Know an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Pie by Alison Jackson, illustrated by Judith Byron Schachner

I didn’t actually read from the book. Using a flannel board I made last year, I typed up the story and acted it out with my old lady puppet. It was a hit!

Over the River and Through the Wood: A Thanksgiving Poem by Lydia Maria Child, illustrated with woodcuts by Christopher Manson

I read this book to the “Over the River and Through the Wood” tune. A few of the kids are learning the song in school and sang along with me.

An Awesome Book of Thanks! by Dallas Clayton

Dallas Clayton is AWESOME. I gush about him all the time on this here blog. A whimsical and inspirational book about being grateful for all things.

Thankful Turkey Craft:

When I stated working on this year’s Thanksgiving storytime I looked through all sorts of turkey, harvest, and pilgrim crafts but couldn’t find one I liked more than the one I made last year which was originally inspired by this Thanksgiving tree craft. So, I decided to do it again. Because, why not? Maybe it will turn into a Thanksgiving craft tradition?

Materials used: cardstock paper, turkey, pumpkin, and leaf dye cut-outs, ribbon, stickers, feathers, markers, cloths pins, tacky glue, glue stick, scissors, and a hole punch.

The preparation for this storytime craft is a little more labor intensive than most. I chose to do these next few steps ahead of time to make it easier on the storytime kids that are a bit younger. First, using tacky glue, I glued three clothespins to the end of a sheet of cardstock.

I also hole-punched the opposite end and tied a ribbon through it.

After the above steps were completed I left it to dry. For storytime, each child received one pre-made “Thankful Turkey” clipboard to decorate.

To decorate, we used a glue stick to glue the turkey, pumpkin, and leaf paper cut-outs…

…Foam stickers, feathers, and markers.

Now, for the best part! Using the cut-outs, we wrote whatever they were thankful for on the paper cut-outs and clipped them to the “Thankful Turkey”.

I encouraged the kids to make more than just three! Cloths pins can hold quite a bit of gratitude.

You can also use pictures…

Or a combination of both!

Little L’s “Thankful Turkey”.

Here’s a look back at the books read and activities from last year’s Thanksgiving Storytime.

Need more ideas?

I found this last night and am so using it next year: “Do the Turkey Trot”.

In a last minute pinch? Check out these Thanksgiving Printables via Totally Tot.

And this Thanksgiving Storytime and this Thanksgiving Storytime over at Sunflower Storytime.

Also, there are bunches of Thanksgiving craft ideas on my fall crafts pinboard.

Last but not least, if you have a moment to browse Scholastic’s The First Thanksgiving it is full of information, resources, and tools including a virtual field trip to Plimoth Plantation.

Do you have a favorite Thanksgiving book? Please share by leaving a comment below!

Happy Thanksgiving!


6 Responses to “Thanksgiving Storytime”

  1. Krystal says:

    I love your ‘There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Pie’ idea! Would you mind sending me the text you ended up using? Thanks!


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