Best Thanksgiving Books 2020 + YouTube Read Along

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What better way to get into the atmosphere of Fall than stacking up on awesome Thanksgiving story books for toddlers. 

Labor Day is over, our knitted sweaters are back in the closet and pumpkin spice has returned to Starbucks. With a new season comes a new rotation of books in your toddlers library. 

So get your comfy blanket, sip on your favorite hot bevarage and let’s enjoy some of these Thanksgiving reads for toddlers 1year old to 3 years old. 

BEST RATED Thanksgiving Book for Toddlers

Peppa Gives Thanks

Being Thankful | Family 

peppa gives thanks thanksgiving

Peppa learns that although there are many things in our life that look exciting, it is also important to be thankful for what we already have. 

Although the story is not specifically set around Thanksgiving and it’s decorative traditions, the message of the story is timeless. This makes “Peppa gives Thanks” a book not only read over Thanksgiving but also all year around. 


The Thank You Book

Being Thankful | Funny

the thank you book thanksgiving

Another great story about being thankful, that can be read year around!

Elephant follows Piggy as she goes around and thanks all their friends for being wonderful. Elephant gets increasingly frustrated as Piggy forgets to thanks one IMPORTANT person. 

This book is simple, few words to read, yet says a lot. The drawings show characters with a white background (like Pokoyo if you’ve seen that show) which makes it a bit less busy. 


A Plump and Perky Turkey 

Rhyme | Longer Story Line

This book tells the story about a town that didn’t have any turkeys at thanksgiving. In an effort to get one they host a turkey themed arts fare to lure them in. 

The rhyming in this book is a lot of fun but there is quite a bit of text on each page. The illustrations are busy and allow for a lot of conversations with your toddler on what they see in the picture. 

The turkey Pete has a primary role which in some cases could bring up questions on why we eat live animals etc.

However the book ends addressing the fact that not all families eat turkey and might instead serve different plates during this time. Diversity is so important now more than ever. 


The Night Before Thanksgiving 

Traditional | Rhymes 

the night before thanksgiving

This book is part of a series called “The Night Before” and addresses the Holidays that we celebrate. 

The night before Thanksgiving tells the story of a little girl during what we know as Thanksgiving Day in it’s most traditional form. 

Families coming together, pies, jams and Turkey. Playing Dodgeball and watching the Parade on TV. This is one that will get you excited every year! 

Stories like these are a must read for families introducing Thanksgiving to their children for the first time. It’s also helpful to help prepare your child for what to expect during this very busy day. 

Again another rhyming story you will love (my toddler’s attention is longer when stories rhyme).


Thanksgiving is for Giving Thanks 

Giving Thanks | Traditional

Another story on the traditional side, this book focuses on giving thanks to the people and things around us. Each page is a different child that is thankful in their own way. 

Illustrations are on the simple side and there is little text on each page, making this thanksgiving book easy to share with all ages. It also is a great conversation starter for what your child is thankful for. 


Thanks for Thanksgiving 

Giving Thanks | Rhyme

Thanks for Thanksgiving

A book about being thankful for the small things in life.  The most basic aspects of our lives can also be the most beautiful, like umbrellas and rain boots and dance parties. 

Beautiful illustrations, rhyming lyrics and a Fall vibe you can enjoy together during story time. 


Pete the Cat: The First Thanksgiving 

History | Lift the Flap

pete the cat the first thanksgiving

Our well known friend Pete the Cat explores the origin of Thanksgiving. We follow Pete along as he plays the role of a pilgrim in his school play. 

This is a great book to introduce little ones (and maybe even yourself) to why Thanksgiving is celebrated. It is easily read for all ages. 

The book has flaps to lift on each page, encouraging your child to physically engage with the story. 

Personally I really like that this covers some important cultural information. We want our children to understand where the “hallmark” holidays actually come from.

Also, I know Luca LOVES it when there are flaps to lift in a book, making it a favorite for us!


Llama Llama Gives Thanks 

Giving Thanks | Family Dinner

Llama Llama gives thanks

A shorter book with rhymes and a sincere message: we give thanks during Thanksgiving but are grateful year around. 

Llama introduces some basic traditions like eating dinner with friends and family and thinking about what he’s thankful for. 

Llama llama comes in a series and cover many topics for children.


Five Silly Turkeys

Counting | Board Book

five silly turkeys

A counting book who’s Turkey theme places it on the map for the Thanksgiving season. 

Counting backwards from five to one, the reader is taken on a short rhyming journey to learn their numbers. 

This book has a turkey shape profile making it more fun for children to experience its pages. Its sturdier board pages are baby friendly. 

It’s simple, fun and educational. 


Go beyond the written word

Books are such a fun and educational way to bond with your children of any age. The stories we read are not only what the author has written but we can create out own stories by the pictures that are portrayed.

Thanksgiving is an important holiday here in the USA, so introducing the subject in a light and illustrative manner via books can set your family up for many awesome Thanksgivings to come!

What books on Thanksgiving do you read with you children?

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2 thoughts on “Best Thanksgiving Books 2020 + YouTube Read Along”

  1. anette.hjelte@gmail.com

    Stephanie, I know you are a very talented person being a professor teaching art/design architecure classes at a prestigious college, running your own buisness ”Chicago Urban Pets”, with your well picked staff of resonsible and service minded animal lovers, to care of many sweet cats and dogs when their caretakers are buissy at work and travels. So your capacity and ambition, also being the very best mom for LOVELY Luca and a devoted wife, besides being the most caring & loving daughter herself, I am astonished following your writing skills in your blog! Easily read, informative yet entertaining. I love this article about books for the Young ones 4 thanksgiving, with the most important message they can learn in order to live a happy life, thankfulness for the Good things in life. Another book I love on a simular theme, to show thankfulness to those closest to you is ”Guess how much I love you”, must be my favourite book for the young ones. The loving tenderness between the papa rabbit and his little rabbit son, makes me both warm to my heart and calm.
    http://www.guesshowmuchiloveyou.com/#!/
    ”Mormor”

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