I forgot about Thanksgiving being early this year, so I just got around to finding Thanksgiving books at the library. However, since I’m trying to get better about noting books we like so I can use them again, here are my top Thanksgiving picks for littles. I didn’t try everything, so if you know of other good books for children about Thanksgiving, please leave a comment!
The Very First Thanksgiving Day
by Rhonda Gowler Greene has wonderful illustrations by Susan Gaber, and also has good rhyme structure. You’d be amazed at how many childrens books TRY to rhyme and DON’T. The structure of this book is a backward-to-forward poem, which took me a minute to figure out. Each page has a beautiful painting that would make the book worthwhile even if you just use it for the pictures.
by Cynthia Rylant, illustrated by Jill Kastner, also has lovely illustrations. The prose is good; Thanksgiving is referred to but not named. As in the book above, this one is worth it for the strength of the pictures.
I Know an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Pie
is a silly Thanksgiving twist on the old lady who swallowed a fly rhyme. It’s funny, has good illustrations, and I was pleasantly surprised by the level of some of the rhymes, such as “pallid” and “salad.”
This First Thanksgiving Day: A Counting Story
is a counting book about the first Thanksgiving. It covers the Pilgrims and the Wampanoag on alternating numbers, so you get more about the Indians than in other books. The illustrations are all right, but nothing to get worked up over.
This Is the Turkey
is a building rhyme about a family getting ready for Thanksgiving dinner, and still being thankful even when the turkey winds up in the fish tank. It has good themes, and the rhymes work, so I would recommend it.
10 Fat Turkeys
is not about Thanksgiving, but it is about turkeys, so I threw it in the mix. Hannah REALLY likes this one, because the turkeys are silly and say “gobble gobble wibble wobble!” It’s also a counting book, and counts down backward, which is a nice change from some other counting books. The pictures are funny and the writing really does capture the silly noises turkeys make.
is my least favorite of these, but I left it in the pile because it’s a good concept. The idea is that there were English mice who came over on with the Pilgrims and met up with American mice and had their own Thanksgiving too. The mice thank God for providing their food, which was unexpected, but nice.
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