As Thanksgiving approaches, it’s the perfect time to read seasonal books with your little ones. Whether whimsical or thoughtful, these rhyming and lyrical stories will captivate your audience with their bright colors and fun adventures.
Bonus! They also help toddlers to understand the true meaning of the holiday in terms they can understand. To find these books at a library near you, check the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners’ Commonwealth Catalog.
Llama Llama Gives Thanks by Anna Dewdney
“In Llama Llama Gives Thanks, it’s Thanksgiving time for Llama Llama and his family! That means yummy foods and autumn leaves and being thankful for everything from pumpkin pies to blue skies. Thanksgiving may only come once year, but in Llama’s family, giving thanks is always here!”
Skills/Themes: Rhyme, Sharing, Thankfulness
Bear Says Thanks by Karma Wilson
“Bear has come up with the perfect way to say thanks—a nice big dinner! When Bear decides to throw a feast, his friends show up one by one with different platters of delicious food to share. There’s just one problem: Bear’s cupboards are bare! What is he to do?”
Skills/Themes: Rhyme, Sharing, Teamwork, Thankfulness
Thank You, Thanksgiving by David Milgram
“In this exuberant Thanksgiving story, a little girl goes on a last-minute errand for her mother. Along the way, she thanks all the familiar things she loves—her warm boots, the song of the birds, the pretty clouds in the November sky. And when she gets home from her errand, her family thanks her for what she has brought.”
Skills/Themes: Repetition, Thankfulness
I know an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Pie by Alison Jackson
“I know an old lady who swallowed a pie, a Thanksgiving pie, which was really too dry.
And with that the feast begins! After the pie the old lady swallows a whole squash, all of the salad, and the entire turkey! As Mother and Father watch in shock, the two children are delighted to see the old lady growing fatter and fatter. And, in the end, the old lady makes a surprising and humorous contribution to the holiday festivities.”
Skills/Themes: Rhyme, Rhythm, Repetition
My Heart Fills with Happiness by Monique Gray Smith
“This beautiful board book, with illustrations from celebrated artist Julie Flett, serves as a reminder for little ones and adults alike to reflect on and cherish the moments in life that bring us joy.
International speaker and award-winning author Monique Gray Smith wrote My Heart Fills with Happiness to support the wellness of Indigenous children and families, and to encourage young children to reflect on what makes them happy.”
Book descriptions via Goodreads.