Blog Post by Kellen Datta

Thanksgiving is quickly approaching, and there is no better time to instill gratitude in your students than now. With these engaging and interactive books about gratitude and kindness, students will learn empathy and compassion, which are two valuable skills that can be carried on throughout the year.

1. The Thankful Book

The Thankful Book celebrates gratitude both big and small. Children learn to be thankful for the special moments in daily activities, such as reading or naptime, while also being thankful for quality time spent with family during special occasions. After reading the book, consider encouraging students to participate in gratitude exercises and reflect on what they are thankful for in their lives.

2. Celebrating Thanksgiving: Giving Thanks

Celebrating Thanksgiving: Giving Thanks is an ideal book to share with students this Thanksgiving. Readers will learn the history of the holiday and learn about why we give thanks for our loved ones.

3. Greta the Grateful Goldfish

Greta the Grateful Goldfish encourages students to utilize both Spanish and English words for expressing their gratefulness. This is a perfect book for practicing cross-cultural expressions of gratitude.

4. Pete the Cat: The First Thanksgiving

Pete the Cat is back in Pete the Cat: The First Thanksgiving, and he’s here to perform a play on the first Thanksgiving! This interactive, lift-the-flap book teaches young readers all about the history of the holiday while also encouraging them to reflect on thankfulness and gratitude.

5. Alligator Arrived with Apples: A Potluck Alphabet Feast

In Alligator Arrived with Apples: A Potluck Alphabet Feast, students will be challenged on their memorization and reading skills in this tongue twister of a book! Even more importantly, students will recognize the friendship and joy that comes from gathering together to share a meal with friends.

6. Change the World Before Bedtime

Change the World Before Bedtime encourages students to reflect on how the smallest actions of gratitude and compassion have the ability to improve the whole world. No act of gratitude is too small, an important fact to remember during the holiday season.

7. Did I Ever Tell You How Lucky You Are?

Dr. Seuss’ Did I Ever Tell You How Lucky You Are? reminds readers to engage in positive affirmations about their lives. As one of the greatest stories of gratitude for kids, young readers will realize the beauty, love, and compassion that surround them daily!

8. The Grouchy Ladybug

Eric Carle’s timeless classic, The Grouchy Ladybug, teaches young readers the importance of kindness, manners, and more. Readers will work on their emotional development as they recognize the value of positive thinking, sharing, and being kind beyond Thanksgiving and the holiday season.

Each of these books has its own unique outlook on Thanksgiving, gratitude, and friendship. Whether a student reads just one or all eight, he or she is sure to learn lots about gratitude and kindness this Thanksgiving.

Interested in an interactive kindness activity for your students? Check out our DIY Kindness Board activity!

About the Author: Kellen Datta is a marketing intern at Kaplan Early Learning Company. She is currently a senior at Wake Forest University and is majoring in politics & international affairs. Her favorite part of her internship with Kaplan is assisting in photo and video shoots for the Kaplan catalogs and website.