Written By: Parenting Contributor, Prerna Malik, TheMomWrites.com
As we get ready to celebrate the holiday season, let’s not forget to involve kids in preparing for the dinners with extended family and friends, celebrations and gift-giving. Yes, it is important to prepare kids for holidays so that they not only know how to behave but also what to expect.
So, on that note, here are 4 tips to help prepare children for Thanksgiving:
1. Involve Kids in Decorating
Yes, get the kids involved in preparing for Thanksgiving by helping you decorate for it. From making lovely pumpkin place cards for the table to simply putting bunches of flowers together into vases and bowls, children of all ages can be involved in decorating for Thanksgiving.
Being involved in decorating gives kids not only a sense of involvement but also confidence and pride in adding their special touches to the family table.
2. Make Meals Together
Yes, kids in the kitchen. While you may not want toddlers afoot while you’re readying the turkey, you can involve children, even preschoolers, in ‘helping’ you with side dishes such as the yams or mashed potatoes.
You can also encourage them to help ‘clean’ the kitchen by wiping countertops or putting away dirty dishes. Where possible, try to make mealtimes kid-friendly so that they don’t feel left out. Something as simple as adding coloring pages for toddlers to color in while waiting for dinner to arrive while make the meal easier and happier for both of you.
3. Encourage Holiday Etiquette
Thanksgiving dinners are usually about meeting extended family and giving thanks for all that is good. Since the kids may be meeting some relatives for the first time, ensure that they know their names and their relationship and greet them with warmth and respect. Also, there maybe family members who have their special quirks, encourage kids to be respectful at all times and not make fun of or hurt anyone’s sentiments.
Teach them to accept gifts of all kinds with grace and gratitude. These small touches will go a long way in making Thanksgiving all about family and happy moments.
4. Create Special Thanksgiving Traditions for Your Family
Finally, create your own Thanksgiving family traditions to prepare the kids for it and celebrate it in your own special way. Family traditions don’t have to be complicated or expensive. Something as simple as reading Thanksgiving-themed books in the weeks before the dinner can be a cherished tradition as can making table decorations together. Need more ideas? Here are some lovely Thanksgiving traditions to inspire you.
How will YOU be preparing the kids for Thanksgiving this year? Do share your ideas in the comments.