1. Cover the table with kraft paper and set out crayons.
2. Create a log crayon holder.
3. Put together a tic-tac-toe board with pumpkins.
This tic-tac-toe board could quickly become your kids’ favorite centerpiece. Use washi tape to create a grid — you can use a tape measure to guarantee even squares. Use tiny white and orange pumpkins as the pieces.
4. Set up a snack station for kids to enjoy while you cook.
The kids can help themselves to fun snacks while you prepare the big meal. Go as healthly — or not — as you’d like. To get the kids involved with setting up the snack station, have them decorate the snack cups beforehand with fingerprint turkeys.
5. Make a healthy fruit-turkey appetizer.
Add any fruit of choice onto skewers stuck in a pumpkin to get this look. You can use yellow and red bell peppers as feathers, along with some craft feathers. Mix and match with cheese, fruit, or meat.
6. Or, create a cheese-tray turkey.
The kids will love snacking on this easy-to-create plate while watching the Thanksgiving parade. Simply layer crackers, cheese, and salami. Use peppercorns for the eyes, a pistachio shell for the beak, toothpicks for the legs and a folded piece of salami for the waddle. If you make this the night before, make sure to keep it refrigerated.
7. Fill a paper-bag turkey with popcorn.
To get started making this paper-bag turkey, you’ll need a large brown grocery bag, two small brown lunch bags, a hot glue gun, and white paper for the frills. For the drumstick, make a fist and stick it inside a small lunch bag. Use your other flat hand to press on the bag and mold it into a rounded shape (check One Charming Party’s site for more directions). Be careful; your kids might like this better than the actual turkey.
8. Make corn on the cob treat bags.
Use real corn husks, yellow tissue paper, and twine to wrap up goodies that can be played with at the table.
9. Turn a pumpkin into a turkey centerpiece.
It doesn’t get much easier than this, and the kids will love it. Have a pumpkin, construction paper, drawing tools, glue, and scissors ready. You can even download the turkey parts here and print it out.
10. Or, make a thankful pumpkin the centerpiece.
Have all the kids and adults write what they are thankful for on a pumpkin. Use a permanent marker and a pumpkin large enough to fit all the thankful comments.
11. Set out materials for a gratitude chain.
While waiting for the Thanksgiving feast, let the kids write what they’re thankful for on paper strips. Afterwards staple or tape together. Have any visiting kids take the gratitude chain home with them.
12. Make fall leaf napkin tags with the kids.
All you need to make these cute tags is some modeling clay and cookie cutters. Make a little hole with a toothpick so you can thread twine through it when it dries. Bake for about a half hour at 275 degrees.
13. Or, decorate bottle tops to hold napkins together.
Here’s what you need to make these fun napkin holders: bottle caps, a paper towel roll, washi tape, googly eyes, a red Sharpie, hot glue, and scissors. Everyone will love putting together this easy, recycled craft project.
14. Create thankful-leaf place settings.
Collect your leaves from your own backyard, sort them, press them, and use silver or gold paint pens to write thankful messages before sprinkling around the kids’ table.
15. Make Oreo turkey place holders.
To make these you’ll need Double Stuff Oreo cookies, candy corn, Whoppers, peanut butter cups, and some frosting. Follow these instructions for an after-Thanksgiving-dinner treat.
16. Or, use pine cones and pipe cleaners to make fun turkey place card holders.
17. Print out word search puzzles.
Here are 18 free Thanksgiving word search puzzles perfect for kids!