21 Amazing, Fun, and Kid-Friendly Virtual Thanksgiving Ideas

Are you looking for some great ideas for a kid-friendly virtual Thanksgiving? 

If your answer is yes, then you are in the right place!

There are lots of great virtual Thanksgiving ideas out there, but many of them focus on more adult-appropriate activities, such as creating a specific Thanksgiving mixed drink to sample together. 

You can rest assured that all of the ideas you’ll read about here at Jen Bradley|MOMs are 100% kid-friendly and perfect for families! 

So let’s get started by discussing what having a virtual Thanksgiving actually means.


What is a virtual Thanksgiving?

A virtual Thanksgiving is when you meet up with family members who are separated by distance in an online meeting platform or forum, such as Zoom, FaceTime, or Google Hangouts. 

Due to the pandemic in 2020, many extended families were not able to travel to be together physically, so virtual Thanksgivings quickly became very popular. 

For 2021, the CDC is continuing to recommend that we take precautions regarding our family gatherings, especially if we have family members who are unvaccinated. 

The good news is that no matter where you live, it is likely that you can still connect with family members near and far to have a virtual Thanksgiving again this year. 

All you need is a good Internet connection and some fun ideas! 

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21 Ideas for a Virtual Thanksgiving with Kids

To give you a quick overview of our best kid-friendly virtual Thanksgiving ideas, here’s a quick list of everything you can read about in more detail below: 

  1. Play Thanksgiving family feud
  2. Play Thanksgiving bingo
  3. Create a gratitude tree
  4. Play Thanksgiving Pictionary
  5. Watch the Macy’s Parade
  6. Watch a football game and have a scavenger hunt
  7. Hold a family talent show
  8. Hold a virtual Turkey trot
  9. Play Thanksgiving trivia 
  10. Create a family “3-word story”
  11. Play Thanksgiving Scattergories
  12. Play Roll-a-Turkey
  13. Do a Thanksgiving Mad Libs
  14. Play Thanksgiving charades
  15. Take a family photo
  16. Create a holiday service list
  17. Swap names for Christmas gift giving
  18. Play lindfolded pictionary
  19. Have a group pie tasting
  20. Cook together
  21. Have a family toast/blessing

The details for each virtual Thanksgiving idea

All right, let’s get into the details for each of these kid-friendly virtual Thanksgiving ideas.

1.Thanksgiving family feud

This super fun at-home version of the popular game show is easy and fun to play online! For all the details, including rules, and real-life survey questions and answers, check out this post here:

15 Hilarious Thanksgiving Family Feud Questions Your Family Will Love

2. Create a gratitude tree

To create a gratitude tree as part of your virtual Thanksgiving event, you’ll want to have a bunch of colorful paper leaves on hand. You can cut these out of construction paper or buy some inexpensive paper leaves right here.

You can have each person on the call share one thing they’re grateful for, and write it on a leaf. Then attach the leaf to the wall with blue sticky tack or onto a whiteboard with a tree trunk drawn on it.

If you want to get really fancy, you can use brown kraft paper to create a tree trunk on an open wall in your home. (Leftover brown paper from your Amazon shipping boxes works great too!)

3. Play Thanksgiving bingo

We’ve got a great FREE Printable Thanksgiving Bingo available in the Jen Bradley|MOMs Printable Library right here! All you need to do is click on the link right here or on the image below to get access.

thanksgiving bingo printable

Once you’ve received your download, you can email the file to your relatives so they can print out the bingo boards wherever they are.

Then everyone will need some bingo markers on hand.

We really like these simple kid-friendly bingo markers, but anything will work – from M&Ms to colored paper squares!

4. Watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving DayParade

If you usually watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade on TV as a family, why not do it while connected with your family members on a Zoom call?

You can still comment on the coolest floats, look for your favorite character balloons, or cheer for Santa together at the end of the parade!

thanksgiving parade

5. Play Thanksgiving Pictionary

Thanksgiving Pictionary is another great game to play via Zoom or FaceTime during your virtual Thanksgiving event!

Every family participating will need a small whiteboard or piece of paper and pens or pencils.

Divide everyone into two teams (girls vs. boys usually works well, but kids vs. adults can also be really fun!).

On each player’s turn, they choose a simple Thanksgiving-themed picture to draw while everyone else on their team tries to guess what is being drawn.

Be sure to set a time limit of 1 minute to keep the game moving!

If the player’s team isn’t able to guess what’s been drawn, the other team can try to guess and steal one point.

Thanksgiving Pictionary can be played for any length of time – as long as players are still able to come up with ideas of things to draw.

6. Hold a family talent show

One of the easiest virtual Thanksgiving ideas is to host a family talent show!

All it takes is some advance notice, so family members can prepare their act.

Some great family talent show ideas include:

  • playing a musical instrument
  • telling Thanksgiving-related jokes
  • performing an athletic skill
  • reciting a poem
  • singing a song
  • showing a work of art
  • reading an essay or short story

Simply give each person on the call the time to share their talent and be sure to lead the applause!

7. Watch a football game together

If you love to watch football with your family on Thanksgiving Day, you can still definitely do that as part of your virtual Thanksgiving celebration!

Similar to the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, all you need to do is turn on the TV and your Zoom or FaceTime, and watch the game together.

To make this extra fun for everyone (especially the kids!), be sure to grab the free Football Scavenger Hunt from the Jen Bradley|MOMs Free Printable Fall Scavenger Hunt pack!

football scavenger hunt

The kids can watch along, crossing off each thing on the page as they see it! You could even offer a prize for the first person to find everything included on the scavenger hunt!

8. Hold a virtual Turkey trot

Turkey Trots are another common Thanksgiving tradition that you can also recreate online!

You can set a time for everyone in the family to begin their run or walk, making sure to adjust for any differences in time zones.

Everyone can then check-in via Zoom or FaceTime once they’ve finished their race, or you can also connect via a free running app that includes sharing capabilities.

A few good running apps that will allow you to challenge your family members are Nike Run Club and Strava Running and Cycling.

If you want to turn this into a family service project, be sure to check out Charity Miles, an app that tracks your miles and gathers donations from large companies like Timex for the charity of your choice.

family turkey trot

9. Compete in a Thanksgiving trivia game

To host a simple Thanksgiving trivia game, all you need is a place to record the scores and this awesome list of 50 Thanksgiving Trivia Questions and Answers from Parade magazine.

To play the game, you can divide players into two teams, compete by family or location, or have an individual competition.

It’s a good idea to have a no-screens policy, so no one can look up any answers online.

Also, consider having a time limit for each answer to be given to keep the game moving at a good pace.

 10. Play “Three Word Story”

This is one of our favorite ideas to keep kids engaged during a virtual Thanksgiving event!

To play Three Word Story, one person begins a story by saying only three words, such as “Once upon a…”

And then the next player adds three more words to the story. They might say, “time, a fierce.”

Followed by the third player who might say “pink frog with.”

And then the next person will add three more words.

It’s seriously the simplest game idea ever!

The only thing you need to do is direct who goes next on your screen and set a time limit for how long the game will last.

11. Play Thanksgiving Scattergories

Thanksgiving Scattergories is another really great game you can snag from our Free Printable Library! 

Once you’ve received your free download, you can email a copy to your family members. 

To begin, everyone needs to have their copy of Thanksgiving Scattergories and a pen or pencil to write with. The host or hostess will also need to have a timer. 

If little kids are playing, they could whisper their answers to an older child or adult who can write down their answers for them. 

On the game sheet, you’ll see a list of categories on the left-hand side and some large letters along the top of the page. 

To play, set the timer for one or two minutes. (If you have younger children playing, you may want to go with 2 minutes.) 

Every player then thinks of a word to fit the category listed on the left that starts with the large letter at the top of the column. Encourage players to be original if they can! 

When the time runs out, each player shares what they wrote for each category, one at a time. 

For every original answer, players score one point. If more than one person wrote the same word, those words don’t count for points! 

Also, two-word answers that both begin with the letter specified score two points! 

For example, if the category was dessert, the player who writes “chocolate cake” could score two points – as long as no one else wrote “chocolate cake” too! 

12. Play Roll-a-Turkey

Kids of all ages seem to love Roll-a-Turkey! 

This is another one of our great free Thanksgiving printables for kids here in the Free Printable Library! All you need to do is click on the image below to get access! 

thanksgiving games for kids

Once everyone has the printable and a writing utensil, you’ll need a simple six-sided die. 

For each roll of the die, players draw the corresponding turkey body part on their paper. The rule is that every new body part drawn has to touch the previously drawn parts.

After 8-10 rolls of the die, the turkeys should be looking pretty hilarious!

13. Play Thanksgiving charades

Thanksgiving charades is exactly the same as Thanksgiving Pictionary, but instead of a pen and paper (or marker and whiteboard), teams guess what the player is acting out with their body.

No sounds may be made by the person doing the acting.

This game is great for a large group of many different ages!

14. Play Thanksgiving Mad Libs

Mad Libs is another great game for a virtual Thanksgiving with kids!

You guessed it, you can download a free printable Thanksgiving Mad Libs from the Jen Bradley|MOMs Printable library right here!

Be sure to involve everyone as you ask for them to shout out nouns, verbs, adjectives, and other parts of speech to fill in the blanks on the page.

Then have everyone listen closely as you read out the completed story!

15. Take a family photo

Although this Thanksgiving family photo may look different from years past, it is still a great idea to take a screenshot with everyone participating in your virtual Thanksgiving!

Even though this is another abnormal year, it is still worth remembering!

16. Create a holiday service list

Since Christmastime seems to bring out a spirit of generosity in many people, you can encourage your family to create a holiday service list.

You could come up with small acts of service to do on a daily basis as a family during the month of December. Or you could choose a larger service project to do each week from Thanksgiving until Christmas.

There’s really no right or wrong way to do this, but it is the thought and the effort that counts!

17. Swap names for Christmas gift giving

If your family switches names or families for Christmas gift-giving, consider making this part of your virtual Thanksgiving!

You can use the Random Name Generator to determine which person will give a gift to another person in your extended family. 

It’s super easy to use, but be sure to delete each name after it is chosen.

Finally, you’ll need to have a scribe who can keep a list of who will be giving to whom! 

christmas gift

18. Do some blindfolded drawing

Blindfolded drawing can always bring some good laughs!

All you need is something to write with, a blindfold, and a timer. A small whiteboard is also helpful, but a piece of plain paper can work too.

The first player is given something Thanksgiving-y to draw and is then blindfolded. Put a pen or marker in their hand and lead their hand to their writing surface.

Then set the timer for 30 seconds and see what they do!

Some simple Thanksgiving things to draw blindfolded are:

  • pumpkin
  • Pilgrim hat
  • turkey
  • ear of corn
  • feather
  • Mayflower
  • cornucopia
  • place setting
  • cooked turkey
  • slice of pie
  • leaf

Simply keep on playing until everyone has had a turn!

19. Have a family pie tasting

Once the Thanksgiving meal is over, consider adding a pie tasting event to your virtual Thanksgiving. 

You can have everyone share which pie they’re choosing to eat first or how they like to eat it (some eat the crust first, others may take their pie with or without whipped cream, etc). 

Then let everyone discuss the details about the pie they’re eating as if they’re on a television cooking show! 

thanksgiving pies

20. Cook together

If you love cooking with special family members in the kitchen on Thanksgiving Day, why not schedule a virtual Thanksgiving kitchen meet-up instead?!

That way you can still swap recipe secrets, share the latest family news with each other, and enjoy spending unscripted time together in the kitchen.

21. Family toast/blessing

As part of your virtual Thanksgiving, it’s a lovely idea to offer a special toast or prayer for the entire family as the end of the year approaches!

You can ask the oldest person in the family to offer it, but it’s also a great idea to consider asking one of the kids to share their own toast or prayer as well!

Final thoughts about having a virtual Thanksgiving

While you may prefer to have an in-person Thanksgiving, there are still lots of ways to hold a virtual Thanksgiving event that will help you to feel connected to your loved ones, no matter how far apart you may be.

And remember to involve the kids! They’ll have a blast with these ideas too and could even make some Thanksgiving memories that will last a lifetime.

Related articles about Thanksgiving:

9 Awesome Thanksgiving Day Activities for Young Kids and Toddlers

How to Teach Gratitude to Your Kids

The Perfect 30-Day Thanksgiving Gratitude Challenge for Moms

Will you be having a virtual Thanksgiving this year? 

Be sure to pin this image to your Pinterest so you can come back to these ideas in the future!

pin for virtual thanksgiving ideas

21 Amazing, Fun, and Kid-Friendly Virtual Thanksgiving Ideas21 Amazing, Fun, and Kid-Friendly Virtual Thanksgiving Ideas21 Amazing, Fun, and Kid-Friendly Virtual Thanksgiving Ideas21 Amazing, Fun, and Kid-Friendly Virtual Thanksgiving Ideas21 Amazing, Fun, and Kid-Friendly Virtual Thanksgiving Ideas

Jen Bradley, the founder of Jen Bradley|MOMs

Hi there! I’m so glad you’re here. I am a mom who believes that meaningful connections with our kids can happen in small and simple ways. Read More …


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