Our 10 Favorite Thanksgiving Books for Kids

Looking for some book suggestions to enjoy with your kiddos as you prepare to celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday with your family and friends? You’re in luck: today we’re sharing our favorite Thanksgiving books for kids.

Looking for some book suggestions to enjoy with your kiddos as you prepare to celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday with your family and friends? You're in luck: Today we're sharing our favorite Thanksgiving books for kids.

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Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays.  I love the concept behind it and it’s one I want to be sure my kids understand. Most of all, I want my kids to embrace the Thanksgiving holiday for all that it is: a time with family to reflect on the many blessings we all have.

One of our favorite ways to prepare for the holiday is by incorporating the holiday into our reading time.  That’s where this list of our favorite Thanksgiving books comes into the picture.

Thanksgiving Books for Kids

Some of our favorite Thanksgiving books focus on thankfulness, but some focus on the holiday itself.  Regardless of your preference, there are lots of great Thanksgiving books for kids.  These are our favorites:

1. The First Thanksgiving

I love The First Thanksgiving as a starting point for reading about the Thanksgiving holiday. Combined with Thomas Locker’s stunning illustrations, author Jean Craighead George shares the story of Plymouth Rock, Squanto, a group of Puritans, and how their coming together forever impacted North America and eventually the world.


Worth noting, the first page of this book explains the origins of Plymouth Rock and even refers to the rock itself as a wondering pilgrim that “left its home in Africa two hundred million years ago.” If that’s a concern for you, simply omit that reference and carry on with this beautiful book.

2. Cranberry Thanksgiving

If you’ve never invited Mr. Whiskers into your home, grab a copy of Cranberry Thanksgiving and change that. It’s a lovely story that centers around Mr. Whiskers and his unwelcome presence at Thanksgiving dinner, but reminds us that judgements based on appearances don’t usually serve us well.


As a bonus, gather your construction paper and chalk pastels before you read this one. Then enjoy this fun Cranberry Thanksgiving chalk art tutorial afterwards. 🙂

3. Thank You, Sarah

Thank You, Sarah: The Woman Who Saved Thanksgiving is a great way to learn about Sarah Josepha Hale, author of the ever famous “Mary Had a Little Lamb,” and her role in creating the Thanksgiving holiday in the United States.

4. Pilgrim Cat

This sweet picture book imagines the life of a Pilgrim girl who finds a cat on the Mayflower and, in turn, a lifelong friend that’s also present at the first Thanksgiving feast.

Related: Our Favorite Thanksgiving Ideas for Your Homeschool

5. Balloons Over Broadway

Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade has been a part of American Thanksgiving celebrations for nearly one hundred years. Balloons Over Broadway tells the story of puppeteer Tony Sarg and celebrates his contributions to this world-famous Thanksgiving tradition.

6. The Squirrels’ Thanksgiving

Let’s face it: Thanksgiving usually involves lots of food and family, but all of that doesn’t necessarily leave us, ahem, thankful when we spend time with some family members. That’s why I like having The Squirrels’ Thanksgiving on my list. It’s a cute story that tackles that sometimes challenging aspect of family get-togethers.

7. It’s Not About You, Mrs. Turkey

This one does a great job explaining the origins of American Thanksgiving traditions.

8. Thanksgiving Treat

Got a kiddo who’s excited about helping with Thanksgiving dinner? This sweet picture book is one to share! It tells the story of a young boy looking to help with the Thanksgiving meal preparation, but is told he’s too young to do so at every turn.

9. Thanksgiving in the Woods

Thanksgiving in the Woods is a charming look at a family whose tradition is to gather in the woods each year to celebrate Thanksgiving together.

10. ‘Twas the Night Before Thanksgiving

Looking for a lighthearted Thanksgiving read? Dav Pilkey’s ‘Twas the Night Before Thanksgiving follows a group of kids on a trip to a turkey farm and serves as a fun reminder that there’s much to be thankful for.


Looking for more books to add to your shelves?  Stop by iHomeschool Network’s Massive Guide to Homeschool Reading Lists and you’ll find more books than you can even fathom!

Looking for some book suggestions to enjoy with your kiddos as you prepare to celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday with your family and friends? You're in luck: Today we're sharing our favorite Thanksgiving books for kids.

8 thoughts on “Our 10 Favorite Thanksgiving Books for Kids

    1. My oldest is that way, but I’m savoring these days with my little one! I know she’ll be on to other books soon enough. 🙂

  1. It’s been awhile since I’ve read Thanksgiving picture books to little ones (my daughter’s in 6th grade now) but one that we loved when she was younger was ‘Cranberry Thanksgiving’. It’s definitely worth a read if you can find it at your local library!

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