These nine fun Thanksgiving Day activities for kids and toddlers can make the day fun for everyone!
Thanksgiving is a day that is often filled with activity – but often it is not a day that is filled with Thanksgiving activities for kids!
You may find yourself busy with cooking, cleaning, table setting, baking, football-playing (maybe?!), hosting, and more.
It can be easy for kids to feel overlooked or in the way.
(And if your kids are picky eaters, they may not even look forward to the delicious food that you’re preparing that much either! #momlife)
Additionally, if you are among the 55 million Americans who travel for Thanksgiving, your kids may be extra tired or out of their normal routine.
Keep reading for ways to turn Thanksgiving Day into a memorable and special day for your kids – without a ton of effort!
Here you’ll find nine great Thanksgiving Day activities for kids and toddlers that can work for large and small groups of all ages.
Free Thanksgiving Activities for Kids printable pack!
Before we get into all the specifics, be sure to grab the FREE Thanksgiving Activities for Kids printable pack from the Jen Bradley|MOMs Printable Library!
It will help you do many of the activities listed below with no extra time or setup required.
Some of the links below are affiliate links. This means that I may make a small commission if you click through or purchase at no cost to you. For more information, click here.
Are you ready to read about the different Thanksgiving activities for kids?
Of course! Let’s do this!
Thanksgiving Activities for Kids
For each of the nine Thanksgiving Day activities you’ll find:
- the appropriate ages the activity is best for (and how to modify if needed)
- a list of any supplies you’ll need
- simple instructions to carry out the activity
If you have any questions about any of them, don’t hesitate to drop your questions in the comments below!
Here’s a quick overview of the 9 Thanksgiving day activities for kids and toddlers:
- Thanksgiving scavenger hunt
- Clothespin tag game
- Thanksgiving Mad Libs
- Thanksgiving Pictionary
- Thanksgiving tracing pages
- Roll-a-Turkey game
- Thanksgiving bingo
- Play Dough turkey
- Placemat coloring
Okay, let’s get into the details, shall we?
Thanksgiving Scavenger Hunt
A scavenger hunt is a great way to entertain a lot of kids (or just a few) at once!
Great for older kids ages 6-12, but younger kids can be easily helped by an adult or older kids, especially in a team or partnership
List of items to hunt for and a pencil.
You can use the ready-to-print Thanksgiving Scavenger Hunt page that’s included in the free Thanksgiving Activities for Kids printable pack, or you can jot down your own list of items for kids to find.
To make it fit the Thanksgiving Day activities theme, choose seasonal items for kids to find, such as dry leaves, pie, pumpkins, trees without leaves, turkey, etc.
Divide the kids into groups of 2 or 3.
It would be a good idea to give everyone at least one partner, especially if you have quite a few kiddos who can’t read yet.
Give each group the scavenger hunt list and tell them to check off the items as they find them throughout the house and/or yard.
It’s a good idea to set a few rules about where they can and can’t go.
Finally, to make it extra fun and challenging, set a timer! The team that finds and checks off the most items on the list is the winner!
Turkey Clothespin Tag
This is a fun outdoor game to get kids up and moving!
This game is great for any age!
If you have a wide variety of ages and a big group of kids, you may want to divide them up into two groups based on their ages.
For example, have a 3-6-year-old group and a 7-year-old and up group.
Paint the clothespins a bright color, and allow them to dry. Attach two googly eyes and a small orange felt triangle to the bottom end on one side of the clothespin.
To play, choose 4-5 kids and attach the turkey clothespins to the bottom of their shirts.
Also, decide on an amount of time for the game to last (about 3-4 minutes usually works well).
Gather the kids in a group and tell them their goal is to collect all the turkey clothespins while everyone runs around!
The person with the most turkey clothespins at the end of the game is the winner!
Thanksgiving Funny Fill in the Blank
If you’ve ever played Mad Libs before, this is the exact same idea!
Older kids who know what nouns, verbs, adjectives, and adverbs are.
You can download and print the Thanksgiving Funny Fill in the Blank page from the Thanksgiving Activities for Kids printable pack!
Or you can write your own story – but that’s a lot of work!
You’ll also need a pencil.
Go through the blanks and ask the kids to share the first word that comes to their minds!
As they shout out the words, write them into the appropriate blank.
When the blanks are all filled in, have the kids quiet down enough so they can hear you read the story back to them.
There are sure to be at least a few good laughs!
Pictionary is always a big hit with kids, and making this one all about Thanksgiving-themed items means it will be easy enough for young kids too!
This will work best with kids who have some minor reading and drawing skills.
A list of Thanksgiving-themed items that can be drawn fairly easily.
(I’ve got a fun page full of Thanksgiving-themed Pictionary words in the Thanksgiving printable pack to save you this step!)
Divide the kids into two groups of mixed ages.
One person from one group chooses a card with a drawing prompt.
He or she then has one minute to draw the thing on the card on the whiteboard while the team tries to guess what it is.
The team that guesses the most drawings correctly after all the drawing prompt cards have been done is the winner!
Thanksgiving tracing pages
This might seem overly simple, but read on for a great way to make tracing pages so much fun for older kids too!
For young kids, this is a really simple activity.
Older kids can participate too – if they are willing to trace the pictures blindfolded!
Use the simple Thanksgiving-themed tracing pages from the Thanksgiving Activities for Kids printable pack!
You may consider printing the tracing pages onto festive-colored papers to make this a little more special.
Also, if you have older kids who will be doing the blindfolded tracing, put the tracing pages into plastic sleeve protectors so you can easily wipe them clean!
For young kids, have them trace and color the Thanksgiving shapes.
For older kids, set the tracing page in a plastic page protector and let them look at it briefly.
Then blindfold them, give them a dry erase marker, and set a timer for one minute or less.
Let everyone watch as they try to draw simple shapes.
This seems so simple, but it is always a big hit because it’s super funny!
Another simple paper and pencil game, this one can be downright silly!
This is great for kids who have very simple drawing skills and up.
At least one Roll-a-Turkey page per kid who is participating, pencils, and a six-sided die.
(You guessed it – the Roll-a-Turkey page is in the Thanksgiving Activities for Kids pack!)
Have one child roll the die.
For whatever number she rolls, look at the chart on the worksheet and draw one of whatever thing corresponds to the number on the die.
For example, if she rolls a 2 and 2 is for a pair of eyes and a beak, draw a pair of eyes and a beak anywhere on the page.
This gets really funny because their turkeys can end up having several bodies, tons of legs, and more wings than they can even fit!
Bingo is always a great idea when you have a crowd! There’s no reading required, the rules are simple, and you can play it over and over again.
Bingo is ideal for a wide range of ages. Kids ages 4 and up usually have the attention span to sit through at least one game.
bingo markers (or a small candy, such as M&Ms or Skittles)
Give every player their own bingo card and a pile of bingo markers.
Have each child cover the free space in the middle of their bingo card first.
Then choose one calling card at a time. As calling cards are chosen, kids cover the corresponding picture on their bingo grid.
When the first person has five pictures in a row covered, they win the game!
You can play different variations of the game too:
- blackout – all the spaces are covered
- four corners – the four corner spaces are covered
- X marks the spot – two diagonals must be covered, forming an X
Once you’ve played the game once or twice, you can allow an older child to pull the calling cards and lead the game!
Thanksgiving Activities for Toddlers
These Thanksgiving Day activities for toddlers are most appropriate for ages 1-3.
This activity used to occupy my toddlers so well!
Enough playdough for each child to have a mound about as big as their fist.
7-9 wooden dowels per child
Cheerios, Froot Loops, or any other type of round-shaped cereal with a hole in the middle.
Roll the playdough into a ball and flatten one side onto the table. You want it to be stationary.
Stick 5-6 chopsticks vertically into the playdough, with a little bit of an angle as you work your way around the ball. (Think of turkey feathers sticking out of a turkey’s body.)
Give your child a small bowl of cereal and have them slowly thread the cereal onto the chopsticks one by one.
If you want to be extra fancy, you can use more playdough to create a turkey head, beak, eyes, and feet.
Let your toddler create his or her own placemat for Thanksgiving dinner. This is perfect if you are planning to have them sit at a “kids’ table”!
Crayons, markers, etc.
Cover the kids’ table completely with the brown kraft paper, making sure to secure it well underneath.
Place crayons or markers in small cups and let your toddlers draw and create their own placemats for Thanksgiving dinner.
You may want to draw a basic rectangle shape for a placemat and a circle for a plate – or you can let them go hog wild!
Final thoughts on Thanksgiving activities for kids and toddlers
I hope you feel empowered and excited to try some of these Thanksgiving Day activities with your kids, so you can have a memorable Thanksgiving together.
If you are the hostess or if you are going to friends or family, having a few ideas to help entertain the kids will be appreciated by everyone!
I can’t wait to hear how much your kids enjoy Thanksgiving this year!
Related articles about Thanksgiving
Which of these Thanksgiving day activities for kids and toddlers is your favorite?
Pin the image below to easily come back to these ideas when you need them!