Whether you’re a parent wanting to get your kids involved in the celebration or a teacher looking for a unique way to send your students off to Thanksgiving break, there are plenty of ways to make Thanksgiving dinner easier for you and educational for them! Here are 4 ways kids can build valuable life skills while they help with Thanksgiving dinner.
1. Create the menu and grocery list
This is an excellent way to not only engage the whole family in making dinner, but also help them practice reading, writing, planning, and organization skills. Have the recipes written out, then have them go through each one taking note of what items you already have and what is needed. Then they can organize the grocery list.
Teachers, have your students prepare these skills before Thanksgiving by having them take random recipes and create an organized and efficient grocery list. This can include discussions of what sizes and weights items come in and the best ways to get the right amount of ingredients without wasting food.
2. Create decorations for the table
There are so many DIY craft ideas for Autumn and Thanksgiving that inspire creativity and vision. Once they decide which decorations to make, have them create a full design of how the table and room will look. Then let them get to work on those crafts! If they need inspiration, the Schoolyard has a few of our favorites here, here, and here, as well as tons of crafting supplies here!
Teachers, get those creative juices flowing in your turkey-eager students by having them start their crafts before they leave for break. If you really want to challenge them, remember, every Thanksgiving table needs a centerpiece!
3. Set the table
Learning how to properly set the table is a skill that encourages many healthy habits. Keep it simple with a basic place setting to accompany their decorations. Let Rose show you how!
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Nothing to it!
Teachers, can you imagine how impressed parents will be if their kids come home with this knowledge and can set the table properly without instruction? This would be a great lesson to pair with any craft projects to create a wonderful, kid-inspired and created Thanksgiving table!
4. Time to cook
Anyone who has ever put together a Thanksgiving dinner knows full well how many tasks are involved. Some are simple enough for a young sous chef to both help and learn! If you’re constantly having to go back and read recipes, have your reading-age helpers read them out loud so you can keep your eyes on your perfectly smooth roux. They can also hone their math skills by measuring out ingredients. When they’re not busy with those tasks, have them help with washing vegetables and keeping counters clean and clear.
High school-age kids can develop important life skills by learning how to chop and dice vegetables. If you’re willing to give it up, you can also give them the most important job of the entire dinner… basting the turkey!
There are so many ways kids can help with Thanksgiving dinner! How do you get them involved? Teachers, do you have any fun lesson plans to send your students home with before Thanksgiving break?