Books

These Thanksgiving books for toddlers are fun and entertaining.
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12 Fun & Entertaining Thanksgiving Books For Toddlers

These turkey tales will make your tot say, “Gobble! Gobble!”

Whether you need to steal away a few moments of peace during the hustle and bustle of Thanksgiving Day at Aunt Jane’s house or you want to keep your toddler busy while you baste your bird, books are an easy (not to mention educational) way to keep little hands and minds occupied this holiday season. With bright and colorful pages, sensory elements, and stories all about what it means to be grateful, these Thanksgiving books for toddlers can be a wonderful source of holiday-themed entertainment for your little turkey.

In my own experience as a parent, I've found that the best books for toddlers are the ones that can either keep them hooked while I read aloud or are visually interesting enough for them to flip through on their own. Many of the books of this list check both boxes. From board books that cover shapes, counting, and letters through a Thanksgiving-themed lens to beautifully-illustrated tales that will pull on caregivers’ heartstrings, there are plenty of seasonal reads to choose from on this list. Though simple enough for toddlers to enjoy, these stories so sweetly capture the spirit of what it means to be thankful, to gather with friends and family, and to celebrate together.

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1

A Sweet Book About Kindness

Through easy-to-understand rhymes, I Am Thankful is a new twist on classic Thanksgiving books for young kids that teach gratitude. Intended for toddlers and preschoolers to read and learn together with their parents, the story features 50 illustrated pages where readers will discover a diverse cast of three families who gather together, share traditions, help others, celebrate the season, and give back to their community by engaging in acts of kindness. The book even gives parents and kids the opportunity to practice thankfulness at home this Thanksgiving season with a list of activities and crafts intended to help inspire an attitude of gratitude in young children.

2

A Book About Friendship

Written by Karma Wilson, Bear Says Thanks is an adorable tale about a bear (aptly named, Bear) who decides to plan a feast to enjoy with his friends. When Bear discovers that his cupboards are empty, his friends come together to share with him. This sweet story is accompanied by illustrations by Jane Chapman that really capture the spirit of what Thanksgiving is about and what it means to be thankful for shared friendship. My own kids received a miniature copy of this book in a meal from Chick-fil-A once and it quickly became such a beloved favorite that we bought the actual version about a month later.

3

A Finger Puppet Board Book

For toddlers who love to move and groove, a board book that encourages them to dance like a turkey is just perfect for the Thanksgiving season. Gobble Wobble: Dance Like A Turkey is an interactive rhyming story that walks toddlers through different moves that a turkey might do — spread your wings, hop, flap, wiggle, and wobble. The best part of this interactive read is the plush turkey puppet attached to the book that your little one (or you) can make move just like they do. This is definitely one Thanksgiving book for toddlers that they’ll happily thumb through and play with on their own if you need to keep them entertained for a bit while you meal prep on the big day.

4

A Story About Catching Turkeys

Fans of the bestselling How To Catch series will love the Thanksgiving-themed story, How to Catch a Turkey. When a turkey runs away right before their school’s Thanksgiving play, a group of students must search high and low through their school for the runaway bird. The story's hilarious antics are entertaining enough to keep parents from getting bored, but paced just right for a toddler’s short attention span. Toddlers will enjoy the book’s fun rhyming scheme written by Adam Wallace, while lively, colorful illustrations by Andy Elkerton will keep their eyes dancing along page after page. This festive tale is sure to become a family favorite.

5

A Thanksgiving Book With A Familiar Character

If your toddler already knows and loves the sweet characters in the Llama Llama stories, they’re bound to enjoy Llama Llama Gives Thanks. Follow along as Llama’s family celebrates Thanksgiving and the fall season with an array of delicious pumpkin treats, colorful autumn leaves, and plenty of gratitude. The central lesson in the story is that while Thanksgiving only happens once a year, Llama’s family can gives thanks for all that they have any time. With short and sweet rhyming text from beloved children’s author Anna Dewdney, this board book is ideal for keeping little minds and hands occupied this Thanksgiving season.

6

A Book Inspired By Handprint Turkey Crafts

A handprint turkey is peak toddler Thanksgiving. (Go ahead and put it on your to-do list if you haven’t already — it’s basically a rite of passage.) Inspired by the craft, Five Little Thank-Yous is a colorful board book filled with rhymes to help parents and toddlers celebrate the meaning of the season. Each page shares a different thing to be thankful for, so it’s an ideal choice to help your little one learn how to show their appreciation and be grateful. One Amazon reviewer says that they paired the book with a turkey craft, adding a feather each day with their toddler to share what they are thankful for.

7

A Thanksgiving Counting Book

Following the same pattern as the popular nursery rhyme “Five Little Monkeys,” this adorable Thanksgiving book is a holiday treat for toddlers. In Five Silly Turkeys, author and illustrator Salina Yoon describes a troupe of turkeys who dance and twirl through their adventures. The physical book itself has crinkly turkey tail feathers that toddlers can touch and grab as you read to them. Amazon reviewer, Katie M., raves, “This is my son's favorite book. I have it memorized because I have to read it several times in a row many times a day. It rhymes, it's cute, and my son loves the feathers on the book.”

8

An Interactive Board Book About Thanksgiving Food

The interactive board book, Turkey Gobble, is part of the Crunchy Board Book collection by Little Bee Books. The book features tabs that little fingers can pull on to make the adorable Little Turkey’s mouth move up and down to mimic him trying to eat all of the delicious Thanksgiving foods that all of his animal friends are bringing to their feast. For food-loving families, this read is top-notch. Your toddler will recognize mashed potatoes, yams, cranberry sauce, and so many other traditional foods enjoyed at Thanksgiving time. Between the book’s interactive elements and colorful illustrations by Allison Black, this read is sure to keep your tot entertained.

9

A Seasonal Board Book

You can your tot can join the hilarious duo of Thing One and Thing Two from the iconic story The Cat In The Hat as they recite all the things they’re thankful for this Thanksgiving season. Part of a collection of seasonal books based on the beloved characters in his works, Dr. Seuss’ Thankful Things is an all-new story set to be released Nov. 16, 2021. Filled with lively illustrations and meaningful, holiday-adjacent content, this read is poised to become a treasured favorite. You can pre-order the 26-page long, toddler-friendly board book now and have it ready to read in time to celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday this year.

10

A Thanksgiving Book About Love

Another toddler-friendly story with sensory elements to keep little hands nice and busy this Thanksgiving season, I Love to Gobble You Up features an utterly sweet message within the board book’s sturdy pages. Author and illustrator Sandra Magsamen’s work is a beautiful way to remind your tot just how much they are loved and cherished, not only at Thanksgiving time, but all of the time. Attached to the book’s pages are turkey “feathers” made from durable (but still soft) felt fabric that your child can enjoy playing with as you snuggle up tight and enjoy this adorably loving story together.

11

A Story About Gratitude

In this adorable Thanksgiving read, Taylor the Thankful Turkey, the precious main character teaches readers of all ages what it means to give thanks and be truly grateful. The main lesson of the story aims to express why it’s important not only to be thankful but to show appreciation to others through words and actions. This is one book that proves it’s never too early to teach your children to have an attitude of gratitude and instill qualities like self-esteem, confidence, and positivity through fun, entertaining story books. As one Amazon reviewer says, “This book will teach children that Thanksgiving is about more than just eating delicious food.”

12

A Board Book About Thanksgiving Words

Part of the alphabet-focused collection of stories from Worthy Kids, this Thanksgiving book for toddlers is all about the letter T. T is for Thanks (and Turkey!) is written in a way that is similar to other ABC-style learning books, only instead of dedicating one page to each letter of the alphabet, every word that is included within this particular story starts with the letter T — thanks, turkey, trampoline, and even taco. The repetitive style of this board book is just perfect for toddlers and will help them really grasp the concept of thankfulness and remember the letter T long after this season has passed.