If you're looking for free Thanksgiving games for children, then you've come to the right place. These games and activities will help your kids learn more about this traditional American holiday, and keep them busy while the adults are prepping for meal time.
Download Free Printable Thanksgiving Games
Thanksgiving Word Scramble
Older children will appreciate this simple word scramble game that will get them thinking about the traditions and words associated with Thanksgiving.
- Printed worksheets
- Small prizes
- Gather children around a table. Pass out a worksheet to each child and instruct him to place it face down on the table.
- Give each child a pencil.
- Instruct the children that when you say "go," they should flip over the worksheet and begin unscrambling the letters into Thanksgiving-themed words.
- Start the timer for two minutes (you may want to give younger children longer) and say "go."
- When the timer goes off, say "stop."
- Count how many correct answers each child has. You can hand out a prize to the child with the most correct answers if you'd like.
Pin the Feathers on the Turkey
This game works similar to pin the tail on the donkey, but children will pin the tail feathers on the turkey.
- Printed turkey image
- Printed and cut out tail feathers (use heavy card stock for more durable feathers)
- Sticky tack or double-sided tape
- Sharpie marker
- Tape the printout of the turkey to the wall. If you are worried you might damage the finish on the wall, use command strips or sticky tack to secure to the wall.
- Place sticky tack or double sided tape to the back of feathers.
- Have the children line up, one behind the other, facing the turkey.
- Blindfold the child at the front of the line.
- Write her name on the feather with a sharpie.
- Gently take the child by the shoulders and turn her slowly three times.
- Place the tail feather in her hand and explain that she needs to pin the feathers to the turkey.
- The children who get the feathers the closest to where they need to go win the game.
Free Thanksgiving Games for Children
The Internet is home to a vast selection of children's Thanksgiving activities. As you plan out your holiday, consider one of these great games to help the kids stay occupied.
The game, 'Twenty Questions,' adapts well to Thanksgiving play. Have kids think of something related to Thanksgiving and then ask yes or no questions to try to guess what it is. This is a good game to play during car trips over the Thanksgiving holiday, especially for younger children. For example, you might ask: "Is it orange?" or "Can you eat it?" If the answers are yes, then you might guess "pumpkin."
Have a pumpkin roll in the backyard. Give each player a pumpkin that they must roll along the ground towards the finish line... the first pumpkin to cross the line is the winner.
Have kids sit in a circle and give each child the name of a Thanksgiving food like "pumpkin pie" or "turkey." Have one child be "it" by standing in the middle of the circle and calling out the name of two Thanksgiving foods. The children with those two names have to run around the circle and trade places before "it" tags them. The child who is tagged will now be "it."
Gobble Gobble Seek
Have one child leave the room while you hide a small object. Now, have the child return to the room. As the child looks for the object, the other children in the room gobble like a turkey, gobbling more quietly as the seeker gets farther from the object and louder as the seeker gets closer to the object.
Have a turkey hunt. Put turkey stickers on about 20 index cards and hide them around the room. Then send children on a hunt to find the turkey cards. If you want to up the ante, you can list a small prize on the back of each card that you will award to the child that finds that card; alternatively, offer a central prize to the child who finds the most turkey cards.
Thanksgiving Dinner Memory
Play the following word/memory game. Have children sit in a circle. The first child says, "I'm going to Thanksgiving dinner, and I'm going to bring..." and then says something Thanksgiving-related that starts with the letter "a." The next child says something that starts with the letter "b" and then repeats the letter "a" word. Have children continue through the alphabet until someone misses.
Happy Thanksgiving Wordplay
Another word game will get kids playing with letters. Have children make as many words as they can out of the letters in the words "Happy Thanksgiving." It is helpful to have a worksheet for this with the letters across the top and blank lines under. You can also hand out blank sheets of paper, instruct the children to write the words "Happy Thanksgiving" across the top and then create words from those letters.
Play Thanksgiving memory. Place about ten to fifteen Thanksgiving-related objects on a tray and cover it with a towel. Uncover the tray and allow the children to look at the tray for two minutes. Now, cover the items on the tray and have the children try to write down as many of the objects as they can remember.
The Internet is a great place to find free Thanksgiving games for children. Here are some additional resources that will keep your kids busy and involved this Thanksgiving season:
- KidzPage has a wide-variety of seasonal games and resources including puzzles, printables, word searches and online Thanksgiving games that will keep your kids in the holiday spirit. They also offer free coloring pages to keep the younger kids in the family entertained.
- PrimaryGames has Thanksgiving-themed printables, online games and puzzles for your kids. They integrate short history lessons into many of the printables, so this can lead to interesting discussions about the first dinner, why the Pilgrims traveled to America and what was eaten at the first Thanksgiving meal.
- Disney Family is a terrific holiday resource that has free crafts, games, puzzles, printables and more with a Thanksgiving theme. Children will appreciate printables with familiar Disney characters, such as Kermit the Frog, Mickey Mouse, Winnie the Pooh and Goofy.
- ABC Teach has an excellent selection of unique crafts, such as a printable that explains how to create a turkey from an empty paper roll. You'll also find coloring pages, writing worksheets, word searches and memory games.
- DLTK offers Thanksgiving themed printables. They have some games that are old favorites such as Thanksgiving-themed Hangman. You'll also find coloring pages, printable jigsaw puzzles, online slider puzzles and Sudoku worksheets.
Building Thanksgiving Memories
With these fun Thanksgiving activities, you can keep your kids active and engaged this Thanksgiving season. If you will have a house full of children this Thanksgiving, these games will build memories that will last a lifetime.