Read the Right Books to Make Your Children More Thankful
My Thanksgiving Book Recommendations
Books can make Thanksgiving last all year long, and it should, don't you think?! As a holiday, it can get too little attention, in my opinion! I like to start way ahead of Thanksgiving to encourage thankful hearts and thinking about being grateful! Really, thankful hearts and attitudes need to be cultivated all year long! My recommendations for Thanksgiving children's books will be your greatest asset and help you accomplish your goals! And, reading "living books" such as these is a thoroughly enjoyable activity for BOTH parents and children, and one that bonds your hearts together forever! So, get a cup of your favorite hot beverage and dive in, for this post is RICH with many of the BEST Thanksgiving Books and you're going to LOVE reading about them!!!
Write Them Upon the Posts
I love to encourage our attitudes to be Godly through my decorating--my home décor.
Deuteronomy 6:6-9 says, "And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: 7 And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up. 8 And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes. 9 And thou shalt write them upon the posts of thy house, and on thy gates."
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Here is a tool for you to use and enjoy building thankfulness in your family! Journal prompts, pages to write and decorate, beautiful quotes and inspirational verses! Get your copy of "A Thankful Thoughts Journal" today to begin having a more grateful family!
Books As Home Decor
I love to change out the decorating in my home for the seasons. Years ago, I realized that my fall decorations weren't out nearly long enough before I had to trade them for Christmas decor! I decided, since fall technically begins in September, I would put out the fall decorations in September.
What does this have to do with Thanksgiving books? I use Thanksgiving books as home decor! They usually have colorful covers, and having them laying out on tables and in baskets and crates, not only is great home decor with a farmhouse look, seeing them sitting out like this encourages picking them up to read!
Books to Encourage Gratefulness
On September 1st, I put out wooden block signs that say, "Give Thanks," and "Be Thankful," the pilgrim figures, and the pumpkins! I interpret Deuteronomy 6, "Write them on the posts," as decorate your walls, doors, shelves and tables with Bible verses, encouraging words and living books in your home decor. I also decorate with plaques, pictures, pillows, throws and decals! Not to mention sticky notes!
I love to decorate with wooden pilgrims, pumpkins with messages of thankfulness, and wooden painted blocks that encourage my family to be grateful, every time we turn around! But, my favorite is books!
Books to Build An Attitude of Gratitude
When we began to Homeschool our children, we read aloud wonderful stories about the Pilgrims and did Thanksgiving activities to promote an atmosphere of thankfulness in our home from September to November (which carried over into Christmas)! With grown children now, we still do some of these same things!
It seems, with Christmas so quickly coming on the heels of Thanksgiving, that my favorite holiday can miss the attention it deserves. It gets squeezed out! We need all the encouragement to be grateful that we can get! There are so many fabulous books for children about the pilgrims and Thanksgiving! In our homes and families, let's build an "attitude of gratitude" this Thanksgiving!
Invest in Living Books
Have you begun a Home Library yet? I encourage you to begin investing in living books, hardcover whenever possible, that you can hand down to your children and grandchildren some day! Among the things my children took with them when they moved out, first on the list were their books! They both have Home Libraries in their homes! (Here is Amazon's Best Sellers List for Thanksgiving Books for kids.)
Books that we read were a large part of our Homeschool Curriculum. The books your children read, or have read to them, that are truly excellent--living books, as Charlotte Mason coined the term--become good friends! They are read and re-read and beloved! They teach the values, attitudes and Godliness you are trying to instill in your children!
One of the reasons I encourage and believe in Homeschooling, is the freedom to spend hours each day reading excellent books. But, no matter how you school, build a LOVE FOR READING and GREAT BOOKS into your children's hearts through read-aloud time! Through timeless stories, skilled character development, creative writing that encourages your child's imagination and transports him to another time, these books reinforce all the Godly character you desire to see bloom in the hearts of your children. Reading and a love for books is a predictor of success in school and life. Build your Home Library today!
Books & Thanksgiving Activities
Over the next few weeks, I will be sharing with you Thanksgiving Book Recommendations, Thanksgiving Activities for The Whole Family, and inspirational thoughts and quotes to encourage us all to be more grateful for all we have. I'm not only talking about possessions, but also our families, friends, the special people in our lives, and most importantly, the grace of our Heavenly Father in sending His Son, Jesus Christ, to earth, to pay for our sins, and save us, by dying on the cross and rising again. This free gift is available to all who will put their faith in Christ.
In the United States, we have a rich heritage, and spiritual foundation. We need to teach our children the history of our founding. It is more important than ever, because there are those who are saying our history is a lie! A myth!!! Teach truth in YOUR Home - - and to YOUR children!!!
Reading the stories of what the Pilgrims endured makes you grateful for how easy our lives are now. So, join me in cultivating an "Attitude of Gratitude" in our hearts that can last all year long.
Throughout this post are some of my favorite Thanksgiving Book Recommendations:
by Ann McGovern
This little Scholastic paperback book, "...If You Sailed on the Mayflower in 1620," is filled with answers to questions every child wants to know about the Pilgrims, such as, "Who were the Pilgrims?" "How many people sailed on the Mayflower?" "What kind of ship was the Mayflower?" "Where would you sleep?" "Would you have had any fun on the Mayflower?" and questions about life once they landed, like "Were there special jobs for boys and girls?" "What did the Pilgrims wear?" and "Did children go to school?" With the addition of color cartoon-like illustrations, the Pilgrims become very approachable, and well, people just like you and me--and history comes alive!
Books to Begin Your Home Library
I am sharing here just a few of my favorite book recommendations for children (and their parents) to read at Thanksgiving time. Send me a message if you have a question about a specific book. These books would be interesting to all ages--something for everyone! Traditionally the Pilgrims are studied in early elementary school, but reading these books every year at Thanksgiving time with all ages, gives a broader and deeper understanding, as the child grows developmentally, and in thinking skills.
Books That Make Children Love Learning!
Having a home library was one of the main ways and contributing factors to our children becoming lovers of books, and lovers of reading and learning. And that is the number one contributing factor to success in school!
We began to establish a home library early in our children's lives, and we found the excellent old books that were classics and are living books on recommended reading lists for Homeschoolers today. We bought them, and put them on our bookshelves. Our grown children love their books, and if there were a fire, their books would be one of the things they would grab first to save. Now that they have their own homes, they both have bought bookshelves and filled them with their favorites.
Books I Recommend For Homeschooling History
History comes alive when you read living books! Some of our most precious times Homeschooling were during read-aloud times, where we left home in our imaginations and walked the streets of Plymouth, Massachusetts, or rode with Paul Revere.
It is not a huge financial investment, but it is a life-changing one. The saying goes that you will be the same person in 5 years, except for the books you read and the people you meet. This is one of the most important activities to be consistent in throughout your child's life! (Struggling with consistency? Subscribe today to get all the help I offer! You can be consistent!) Here is another really fun book!
Eating the Plates
A Pilgrim Book of Food and Manners
by Lucille Recht Penner
Very interesting facts about everyday life for a pilgrim family, before and after sailing on the Mayflower! For instance, did you ever stop to think that the people who came over on the Mayflower had "tried to bring enough things to last a lifetime"?!
Or what about food?? "What did the Pilgrims eat during their long voyage? Most of the food on the Mayflower was cold and dry. There were moldy cheese and dried peas. Salty beef and dried fish. And there were ship's biscuits--as hard as rocks. Hundreds of these biscuits had been carried onto the boat before it sailed. They were stacked in huge piles."
After arriving in America, what was dinnertime like? Well, "later, when the Pilgrims had more time--and more dishes--food was brought to the table on large round platters called chargers. No one had his or her own plate. Instead, two people would share a trencher--a bowl carved or burned out of a block of wood...Some poor people didn't have wooden trenchers. Instead, they used pieces of stale bread as plates. They put the food on top. Then, after they had eaten the food, they ate the bread plates!"
Fascinating facts like these make the Pilgrim families come alive for children and adults alike. The language is easy and the print large and you will be tempted to read the 107-page paperback book in one sitting, but it will be more fun to spread it out--don't worry, your children will be begging for more!
Samuel Eaton's Day
A Day in the Life of a Pilgrim Boy
by Kate Waters
Photographs by Russ Kendall
This is a charming book about a 7-year-old boy, Samuel, who lived in 1627. "Photographed in full color at Plimoth Plantation, a living history museum in Plymouth, Massachusetts, and based on real people of the time, here is a charming and accurate portrayal of life in seventeenth-century New England." (Description taken from the back cover.)
The story follows Samuel, "a grown boy in breeches," on his first day "aiding with the harvest" of rye beside his father and his father's friend and neighbor, Robert Bartlett. Told from the boy's perspective, and with the large full-color photographs, and explanations of all that transpires, this is an intriguing and entertaining look into a Pilgrim boy's life.
Says Samuel, "It is my task to gather and bind the rye. Robert Bartlett shows me how to bind." (Photos abound.)
There is a wonderful glossary in the back of the book to help you with words such as "bind," which your children will learn means "to tie." Also, did you know that "gammy" means "clumsy"? Samuel discovers that man's work is not as easy as he thought. "At first I am gammy and fall behind. To watch is easy. To do is hard."
Be sure to look for and get the book by the same author about a day in the life of a Pilgrim girl--the companion book to Samuel Eaton's Day--entitled Sarah Morton's Day.
Book: "Sarah Morton's Day," A Day in the Life of a Pilgrim Girl
This is the companion book to Samuel Eaton's Day, showcasing a day in the life of a Pilgrim girl! Sarah Morton's Day! Get both books--they're so fun, and educational, at the same time!
Sarah Morton's Day is also beautifully photographed at Plimoth Plantation. If you ever get the chance to take a family vacation and go there, I highly recommend it! Educational vacations and trips, is another subject I'll have to write on soon!
So, these are just a sampling of the "living books" that made Homeschooling so much fun! They also prompt ideas for activities and crafts that you can do along with reading the books.
Let me know what are some of your favorite books to read about the Pilgrims and at Thanksgiving time! I'd love to hear!
Here is a tool for you to use and enjoy building thankfulness in your family! Journal prompts, pages to write and decorate, beautiful quotes and inspirational verses! Get your digital copy of "A Thankful Thoughts Journal" today (give one to your tweens and teens, use it as a thankfulness-prompting activity with your preschoolers and K-3rd- graders!) to begin having a more grateful family right away!
Have a Great Week Making Your Home For God!
I help overwhelmed young Christian moms have clarity and consistency prioritizing God's unique goals for their home, family, and life through courses and coaching.
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About the Author
Wendy Gunn helps young Christian moms have clarity and consistency prioritizing God's Unique Goals for their home, family, and life through courses and coaching.