Sunday, November 17, 2013

Thanksgiving Craft....The Thankful Tree!

Each year, we do a Thankful Tree to celebrate Thanksgiving.  It is absolutely one of my favorite traditions.  The premise is simple....I sit down with each of the children and ask them what they are thankful (or happy for) in their lives.  I have been doing this for several years now.  When we first started the boys were very small (2, I think) and the list was filled with names of family but also peppered with randomness like swimming pools and triangles.  I simply love hearing what the kids will say.

Last year I was blown away by the Thankful Tree lists.  Gone was most of the random things (there were a few which I was still glad to see....always gives me a chuckle!) and there was an abundance of "BIG" things on the list which showed me how much the kids are really understanding what the holiday is about. We will be doing our Thankful Trees this coming week and I wanted to share our special craft with you.  It is a wonderful way to celebrate the importance of the holiday and to connect with your children.  Have fun!

Colored Construction Paper
Eager Children
Instructions:  Sit down with the kids and draw a simple trunk (mine is pretty much a rectangle) on brown paper.  Depending on age have either you or your child cut it out.  Next trace your child's hands on different colored paper (I use orange, yellow, red and green for a "fallish" feel).  I do about 10 hands and then we cut them out together.  These tiny hand prints will become the leaves for your tree trunk.  Talk to your child about what it means to be thankful and share what you are thankful for.  Ask your child about the things he/she is thankful for and write them together on each of the leaves.  I love this part.   It is such an lovely way to connect with you child about what is important to them.  Next glue your leaves to the tree trunk.  Display this work of art prominently!  This is what Thanksgiving is about...sharing what makes us thankful so be sure to praise your child.

Have fun and let me know how your Thankful Trees come out. 

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Janice said...

What a good idea!! Love this because it makes the kids aware of what to be grateful and thankful for. We sometimes take this for granted. I bet your kids will do this with their kids. What a need family thing you've started.

Sherri L said...

I would like to do something like this as a family

workingmomwm said...

I love this idea! I'm gonna have to try this with my four-year-old this year...and maybe I can get my two-year-old to join in. We'll see! :-)

Autumn said...

We did a Thankgiving tree last year, my son loved it! It was nice to hear daily what he was thankful for

Christine McN said...

Oh! I love this idea!