Thanksgiving is a time of being thankful and sharing with our loved ones.  During Thanksgiving, parents and kids alike, love the community feeling we get from sharing a feast together at Thanksgiving.  Kids enjoy kids and adults enjoy adult company, but they don’t necessarily want to eat with the other.

That is why adult tables and kids tables were created!

Allowing kids to decorate their own Thanksgiving table can be a lot of fun and rewarding for children!

 Let’s face it mom/dad- it takes the pressure off you too, giving you one less thing to do before the holiday! 

Kids will have fun getting creative and take great pride in making the kids Thanksgiving table uniquely theirs.


Before Thanksgiving day when you are decorating your own table, talk to your kids about how they would like to create their own special table! 

Kids can expand on the standard table decorations for Thanksgiving including the tablecloth and place settings and make it their own by using homemade candles and autumnal decorations such as leaves and twigs arranging them with autumn-colored flowers. 

Use this as a teachable moment and take the time to teach your kids about the colors of Thanksgiving. These beautiful autumnal colors include yellows, oranges, reds, rusts, browns, and greens.  Knowing these colors will help to guide them while picking the perfect decorations!

So where do you start?

Scavenger Hunt for Decorations

 Send your little ones out on a scavenger hunt to collect things they would like to use to decorate their special table.  You can suggest gathering twigs, pine cones, acorns, and flowers. Offer them a jar that they can use as a vase to arrange their treasures.

Leave Craft and Decorations

 If you have silk leaves, let the kids arrange them on the tablecloth or glue them onto a mason jar, turning them into glowing lanterns!  If you don’t already have these on hand,  that’s ok.  You can get them easily from Amazon.

Wax Candles

Let your kids take pride in making their own wax candles by rolling sheets of wax around a wick into a cylinder.  Not only will these candles look beautiful on the table, but the kids can enjoy the fruits of their labor when they see their candles light up!   

 Let your kids take pride in making their own wax candles by rolling sheets of wax around a wick into a cylinder.  Not only will these candles look beautiful on the table, but the kids can enjoy the fruits of their labor when they see their candles light up!   

Place Mats

For your older children, suggest drawing place settings on a brown paper placemat.  These placemats look very modern chic and teach the children about the formal placement of dining cutlery.  To see design ideas, go to my Pinterest board: Kids Thanksgiving table.


 If you are using china or traditional dining plates, they can set them out and also fold napkins, tied with twine and other autumnal objects. If you are choosing paper plates, there are some adorable and festive Thanksgiving plates at most party stores! These will give your table a little extra flair and the best part is that they are disposable!

Place Cards

The Thanksgiving table wouldn’t be complete without place cards, especially if you have a large family. This can be another craft for the older children to do while making their placemats!

For more decorating ideas for your kids, check out my Pinterest board Thanksgiving kids table.


Now their table is uniquely decorated but…  What do kids eat at Thanksgiving?  Older kids and teens may be happy to sample the turkey and all its trimmings, but some, especially the younger ones may turn their noses up and say yucky! 

To get your picky eaters to eat a “feast” alongside you, offer them a medley of turkey-shaped food.  Wait, what? Did turkey shape food? Yes, you heard me!

Foods such as sandwiches, fruit plates, meat and cheese trays, pancakes, crackers and more can be artfully be shaped to look like turkeys. I have a bunch of creative examples on my Pinterest board Thanksgiving kids tables

In addition to turkey shaped food, you can offer traditional kid food like mac in cheese and cauliflower bites, spicing things up with fruit or meat ’n’ cheese filled “cornucopias’ which are actually sugar cones shaped to resemble an actual cornucopia.  

Have kids done eating? Now what? What can the kids do so they don’t get bored and wiggly-jiggly while they wait for the grown-ups to finish eating….and finally get their dessert?

Table games! 

Prior to the big event, print out Thanksgiving themed crossword puzzles and coloring activity pages for your young kids. Thanksgiving themed mad libs for the older ones will be a hit!  They can also read printed questions that prompt them to ask each other what they are grateful for and ask each other table conversation starter questions.  To find these printables and more kids table activities, on Pinterest board Kids Thanksgiving Table.

Now that Thanksgiving dinner is eaten and the table is cleared, your kids of all ages had a memorable Thanksgiving filled with creativity, imagination, fun, and lots of gratitude!

You can sit back and know that you gave all the kids a Thanksgiving to be thankful for!

Congratulations mom!  You just had another successful Thanksgiving! 


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