Honor the spirit of Thanksgiving and keep the kids occupied until the meal is ready by making placemats that recount what the child is thankful for on the big day. Stickers, drawings, wording or a combination can turn a sheet of paper into a decorative addition to the dinner table.
Sheets of paper or heavy stock (1 for each place mat)
Thanksgiving-themed stickers or pictures
Crayons, pencils, markers
School or craft glue
Colored paper for cutouts
Self-adhesive clear plastic
Choose a format for the placemats: will they follow a theme, or can each child create as they please? Will each child create only his or her own placemat or will they create enough placemats for all of the places at the table?
Preprint Thanksgiving clip art images on blank pages for younger children to color to avoid frustrated little artists (see reference 1).
Have children sign their creations and add the year. Protect the finished placemats with self-adhesive clear plastic on both sides if you plan to save the mats as keepsakes.
Here are some ideas to get things started:
Thanksgiving pictures from magazines
A “What I’m most thankful for” list
A turkey with each tail feather identifying a blessing in the child’s life
Pilgrim images remembering the first Thanksgiving
Bible verses about giving thanks
A weaving of two sheets of paper together (see reference 2)
Don’t forget to take a moment before the meal to acknowledge the contribution of the artists.
1) Free Thanksgiving Coloring Pages- http://www.coloringpages.net/thanksgiving.html
2) Ruth Eshbaugh: Garden Weaving-http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/5535268/garden_weaving.html?image=1166604&cat=25