For Children
Thanksgiving Books

Arthur's Thanksgiving
by Marc Tolon Brown
Reading level: Ages 4-8

When no one volunteers to be the turkey in the school play he is directing, Arthur takes matters into his own hands. "Readers will welcome this frankly funny addition to the series."


Barney's Thanksgiving
by Stephen White, Chris Sharp (Illustrator), Gary Currant (Illustrator)
Reading level: Ages 4-8

Join Barney, Baby Bop, and BJ for Thanksgiving. This holiday tale finds all three dinos giving thanks for many things, including friends and family, and Barney and friends work together to make a special feast for all their animal friends.

The Berenstain Bears and the Prize Pumpkin (First Time Books)
by Stan Berenstain, Jan Berenstain (Contributor)
Reading level: Ages 4-8

Book Description
The Bear family might not win the blue ribbon for their entry in the pumpkin contest during the annual Bear Country Thanksgiving Festival, but they do gain a new appreciation of the true spirit of the holiday and all they have to be thankful for.

It's time for the annual Bear Country Thanksgiving Festival, and the Bears have entered the pumpkin contest with a vengeance. They may or may not win a blue ribbon, but they certainly do gain a new first-rate appreciation of the true spirit of the holiday and all they have to be thankful for.

About the Authors
Stan and Jan Berenstain were both born in 1923 in Philadelphia. They didn't know each other as children, but met later at school, at the Philadelphia College of Art. They liked each other right away, and found out that the both enjoyed the same kinds of books, plays, music and art. During World War II, Stan was a medical assistant in the Army, and Jan worked in an airplane factory. When the war was over, they got married and began to work together as artists and writers, primarily drawing cartoons for popular magazines. After having their two sons Leo and Michael, the Berenstains decided to write some funny children's books that their children and other children could read and enjoy. Their first published children's book was called The Big Honey Hunt . It was about a family of bears, who later became known as the "Berenstain Bears".

Over 50 children's books later, Stan and Jan still plan all of their books together -- both write the stories, and both write the pictures. They live outside of Philadelphia in the country.

Clifford's Thanksgiving Visit
by Norman Bridwell
Reading level: Ages 4-8

The Big Red Dog delights little readers with a brand new holiday adventure in which Clifford and Emily Elizabeth discover how much they have to be thankfulf or on Thanksgiving Day.

Cranberry Thanksgiving
by Wende Devlin, Harry Delvin (Contributor)
Reading level: Ages 4-8

Book Description

Grandmother certainly didn't want to ask Mr. Whiskers for Thanksgiving dinner!

She was very angry when Maggie asked him.

She was even more angry when SOMEONE stole her favorite, secret recipe for cranberry bread!

Was Mr. Whiskers the thief?

Maggie and her grandmother each invite a guest to their Thanksgiving feast, featuring Grandmother's own cranberry bread, made from a secret recipe. "A tried and true recipe for an entertaining story that will delight young readers."

Full-color illustrations.
--Catholic Library World.

Gracias, the Thanksgiving Turkey
by Joy Cowley, Joe Cepeda (Illustrator)
Reading level: Ages 4-8

In this warm holiday story, a young Puerto Rican boy saves the life of his pet turkey with help from his close-knit New York City family and neighborhood. Beginning Spanish vocabulary is woven into the text.

I Know an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Pie
by Alison Jackson, Judith Byron Schachner (Illustrator), Byron Schachner (Illustrator)
Reading level: Ages 4-8

In the awfully silly I Know an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Pie, children's librarian and author Alison Jackson bypasses pilgrims completely and cuts straight to the stomach of Thanksgiving in America--dinner. A slightly dizzying new spin on the well-loved cumulative rhyming song "I Know an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly," this madcap picture book stars a ravenously hungry relative who comes to Thanksgiving dinner with a pie. Since she eats the pie in its entirety before she even gets in the house, she has to swallow some cider (that "rumbled and mumbled and grumbled inside her"). If you must know, "She swallowed the cider to moisten the pie, / The Thanksgiving pie, which was really too dry, /Perhaps she'll die." The story continues in this vein, as we watch the hosts grow visibly alarmed--and the children visibly delighted-- by the old lady's surreal appetite and supernaturally increasing girth. Illustrator Judith Byron Schachner--creator of the acclaimed Willy and May--has masterfully captured this ludicrous tale in hilariously haywire pen-and-ink drawings, splashed with watercolor. Kids will love this romping, rhyming frolic through a familiar favorite.

Molly's Pilgrim
by Barbara Cohen, Michael J. Deraney (Illustrator)
Reading level: Ages 4-8

Book Description
Molly and her family have moved to America from Russia.

Her mother says they moved to find freedom. But the children in Molly's third-grade class make fun of her accent and clothes. That doesn't seem like freedom to Molly at all.

At Thanksgiving everyone has to bring a Pilgrim doll to class. The doll Molly's mother makes looks like a Russian peasant girl. It doesn't look at all like the Pilgrims Molly has seen in her schoolbook. Molly is afraid she'll never fit in with her classmates now.

Molly and her parents are a Jewish family who have emigrated from Russia to the United States to escape religious persecution. When Thanksgiving arrives, the teacher assigns a project to make a Pilgrim doll. Molly's mother helps her make a doll but dresses her in Russian clothes. This special doll teaches Molly's classmates that there are all kinds of pilgrims.

The Pilgrims' First Thanksgiving
by Ann McGovern, Elroy Freem (Illustrator)

Reading level: Ages 4-8

Book Description
The Pilgrims' first Thanksgiving lasted three whole days. Ann McGovern's simple text introduces children to the struggles of the Pilgrims during their first year at Plymouth Colony and the events leading to the historic occasion we celebrate today.

About the Author
Ann McGovern, the author of more than 55 highly regarded books for children, is excited about the world: the world of history, nature, imagination, and the world of people. Her enthusiasm is the foundation for each word she writes. Her books, which range from fast-paced biographies and fact-filled fun histories to voyages in faraway lands, from playful picture books to retellings of well-known legends and fables, reflect her diverse and many interests.

A tireless traveler who has visited every continent, McGovern frequently incorporates her adventures into her books. Playing with Penguins and Swimming with Sea Lions were inspired by expeditions to Antarctica and the Galapagos Islands, respectively. Desert Beneath the Sea resulted from a scientific scuba expedition to the Red Sea, the Caribbean, and the China Sea with Shark Lady Eugenie Clark. And, for Questions and Answers About Sharks, McGovern took notes on her underwater slate with twelve sharks just inches away, after she took part in an underwater shark feeding in Papua New Guinea, where she was scuba diving.

But when McGovern visits schools to show slides of her travels and discuss how they provide ideas for her books, she emphasizes that inspiration can come from feelings and close-to-home experiences as well as far-off adventures.

McGovern grew up in New York City where she lives today. Her interest in books and writing began at an early age. "As a child, I developed a terrible stutter and never raised my hand in class," she says, "I became a writer to express the feelings that I couldn't speak about and an avid reader as way to escape a sad life."

Her formal education ended after her first year at the University of New Mexico, where the only "A" she received was in horseback riding. But McGovern believes her most valuable education has come form her travel experiences and scuba diving expeditions, along with the intensive research she does for her books.

McGovern credits her late husband, Martin Scheiner, with introducing her to many of the experiences that have come to influence her writing. "With Marty, I stopped stuttering, I learned to drive, scuba dive, sail, take risks - maybe too many - when lions growled outside our tent in East Africa and the time a shark got too cozy with me in the Great Barrier Reef ," she says. "I plan to write about my journey to the North Pole, when the walrus poked its tusks into our rubber boat. I'll never run out of ideas - or memories!"

McGovern makes certain she visits schools and speaks to student as often as she can. "School children give me feedback that's wonderful for my work. Sometimes when I look at a sad, shy face in the audience, I see the lonely child I once was, and I hope that maybe my words can have some influence on a life. Making a difference in children's lives in why I plan to write until I am ninety."

(Pooh) The Best Thanksgiving Day
by Ann Braybrooks, Arkadia (Illustrator), A. A. Winnie-The-Pooh Milne
Reading level: Ages 4-8

Book Description
Pooh and his friends are about to celebrate Thanksgiving for the first time. Everyone's going to bring something to the feast. When Tigger asks Christopher Robin what he can contribute, CR tells him that they can't have Thanksgiving without a turkey, so that's what Tigger should bring. Tigger , thinking that he gets to invite the guest of honor, bounces off to look for a turkey. But every bird to whom he extends an invitation runs off; Tigger is puzzled by this reaction, because, after all, he's just trying to be friendly. Knowing that he can't let his friends down, Tigger arrives at the feast dressed as a turkey. What happens after that gives this sweet and very funny story a satisfying ending for all concerned--readers included!

Thanksgiving at the Tappletons'
by Eileen Spinelli, Maryann Cocca-Leffler (Photographer), Judith Stuller Hannant
Reading level: Ages 4-8

Every Thanksgiving the Tappleton family enjoys a huge turkey dinner, but this year they are plagued by a series of hilarious disasters, from the turkey sliding down an icy path into the pond to the salad being eaten by pet rabbits. This popular holiday tale is made livelier than ever by Maryann Cocca-Leffler's bouncy new paintings.

Twas the Night Before Thanksgiving
by Dav Pilkey
Reading level: Ages 4-8

"Pilkey takes that holiday staple and recasts it as a Thanksgiving tale about a bus load of school children who feel sorry for a friendly batch of turkeys and save them from the farmer's ax . . . The robust, cartoon-style art has van Goghesque sky vistas popping up from time to time and a manic energy that spills off the page."


Card catalog description
School children on a field trip to Mack Nugget's farm save the lives of eight turkeys in this poem based on "The Night Before Christmas."

Children's Thanksgiving Video

Bugs Bunny's Thanksgiving Diet (1979)

A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving (1973)
Rated: NR
Starring: Peanuts Gang, et al.
Director: Bill Melendez


This sweet, heartwarming 1973 offering from the Peanuts gang (and Charles Schultz) once again shows Charlie Brown in a pickle, as his erstwhile friends impose upon the hapless would-be-host to provide a memorable and traditional Thanksgiving feast. And as much as Charlie Brown would rather forget the whole thing, he just can't help but try for fear of being labeled a failure. Ultimately it's up to Snoopy and Woodstock to save Charlie from certain embarrassment, and it falls to Linus to impart to all assembled the true meaning of Thanksgiving. This very special Emmy Award-winning cartoon features the usual sweet unassuming humor that only the Peanuts can provide, along with the melodic Vince Guaraldi score, and is one of those childhood classics meant to be enjoyed again and again.

--Robert Lane

Rugrats - A Rugrats Thanksgiving (1997)


This frantically energetic show from the hit animation series--certainly best appreciated by little kids who can keep up with it--focuses on Thanksgiving festivities at the Pickles house. Besides the usual holiday traditions of nonstop football on television and bickering, there's a problem when a real live turkey shows up at the door, and the kids conspire to keep it from ending up on the dinner table. If you can wire yourself to this highly charged program, there are good laughs and lessons in it for the whole family.

--Tom Keogh

Thanksgiving Books

Thanksgiving 101:
Celebrate America's Favorite Holiday With America's Thanksgiving Expert

by Rick Rodgers

Getting ready for your first turkey or dissatisfied with the dry results you got last year? Not to worry--"Mr. Thanksgiving," Rick Rodgers, is here to teach Thanksgiving 101. And he ought to know. For the last eight years he has been traveling the country to teach his class as the media spokesperson for Perdue Farms, an industrial giant among turkey producers.

Before getting to what he calls the "Main Event," Rodgers has advice about how to plan ahead and coordinate the labor to make the day itself more enjoyable. He opens with sections on appetizers and beverages (Glittering Spiced Walnuts, Spicy Cheddar and Pecan Balls, Bloody Marys and Ramos Fizzes) and soups and salads.

The "Main Event" is everything, absolutely everything, you would want to know about buying, thawing, prepping, and roasting a turkey. You needn't look any further. There's a long question-and-answer-style section that anticipates any questions you might have. Then it's right on to everything from Perfect Roast Turkey with Best-Ever Gravy to Holiday Meatball Lasagna.

Follow all that with sections on stuffings and dressings, side dishes, yeast and quick breads, desserts (there's more to do with that pumpkin than make pie--how about Pumpkin-Walnut Roulade with Ginger Filling?), and leftovers (Turkey Tetrazzini), and you can see how Rick Rodgers's Thanksgiving 101is the cookbook equivalent of one-stop shopping for your holiday meal.
--Schuyler Ingle

Book Description
100 Thanksgiving recipes so good you'll use them throughout the year!

On the fourth Thursday in November, 75 million American families sit down to the hearty feast known as Thanksgiving dinner. But earlier in the week, someone in the house has been worrying about doing that dance between mashing potatoes and mixing stuffing; about basting fourteen pounds of turkey and baking that pumpkin pie; and about getting it all on the table at just the right moment.

One of the most popular cooking teachers in America, Rick Rodgers has taught his Thanksgiving 101 classes for years, and now he's collected all of his know-how, recipes, menus, and trade secrets. Rick is with you every step of the way, from shopping through chopping, from choosing the best recipes to selecting the right wine. Whether you're looking for turkey and all the traditional trimmings, chutneys, and chowders; a vegetarian dinner with just the trimmings; or new ideas for regional classics, including Cajun- or Italian-inspired tastes, Thanksgiving 101 serves up a delicious education for novice and experienced cooks alike. You'll have a seat in the front row as Rick teaches you how to:

Feed twenty-four people when your oven can only hold a twelve-pound turkey Transform leftovers into satisfying lunches, dinners, and sandwiches Deal with turkey safety and handling issues Save time by learning what can (and can't) be prepared days or weeks in advance

Thanksgiving 101 you'll never have to worry about this holiday meal again. Rick Rodgers will help you create memorable Thanksgiving dinners year after year.

America's Thanksgiving expert provides foolproof recipes for turkey, stuffings and dressings, cranberry sauce, pumpkin desserts, and other traditional and contemporary fare.

Thanksgiving Music

The Great Thankgsgiving / Mormon Tabernacle Choir
Composer: Traditional
Orchestra: Mormon Tabernacle Choir

Listen to Sample Tracks

Home to Thanksgiving - Songs of Thanks and Praise

Conductor: Paul Hillier
Performer: Andrew Lawrence-King
Orchestra: Theatre Of Voices, His Majestie's Clerkes


An album celebrating harvest's end, Home to Thanksgiving is a harvest itself, selected from nearly a dozen Hillier CDs. The only thing that suffered as the result of Paul Hillier's separation from the Hilliard Ensemble was his albums' graphic design. By leaving Hilliard, the men's vocal group he'd helmed, Hillier abandoned the elegant packaging afforded him by ECM Records. On ECM, his penchant for plainchant was matched by stark photography, lending a steady visual horizon while his group darted maverickly between liturgical music and Arvo Pärt's minimalism.

Somehow at Harmonia Mundi, a new Hillier collection calls for a Currier and Ives painting. So be it. Hillier listeners understand that no marketing feat can fill the gaps that punctuate the 12th-century "O quanta qualia"; only a faith in his distinct musical agenda (or, perhaps, His) can bridge such pauses. There is communal cheer ("The Apple Tree," dating from the Revolution, has a catchy chorus), but it's tempered by introversion. Secular Puritan John Cage shows up, having set lyrics by Thoreau. That follows a 16th-century snippet of Thomas Tallis, and is followed itself by a 12th-century piece that attenuates 13 syllables of benediction for over four minutes. Currier and Ives may greet listeners at the cabin door, but Hillier waits inside with a sermon straight out of Jonathan Edwards.

--Marc Weidenbaum

Listen to Sample Tracks

Hymns of Thanksgiving and Consolation
Composer: Johan Peter E. Hartmann
Performer: Inge Beck

Listen to Sample Tracks

Thanksgiving: A Windham Hill Collection
Various Artists - New Age


Thanksgiving generally is a pleasant and likeable affair. Its features include a charming, gently propulsive take on the traditional piece "Allelujah" by Celtic harpist Lisa Lynne; a delicate rendering of "Amazing Grace" by John Doan on a 20-string harp guitar; and a church-ready version of "We Gather Together" by a trio of Paul McCandless (oboe), Philip Aaberg (piano), and Michael Manring (bass). A midalbum three-song stretch, though--from the heavy stringing (cello, violin, guitar) of William Coulter and Barry Phillips to R. Carlos Nakai's flute soliloquy to a saxophone meditation by Paul Winter--lingers overly long in a melancholy state. Later, a thoughtful harmonica outing by former Lovin' Spoonful member John Sebastian aims for Americana yet delivers more spaghetti Western. Still, the album ends with pieces by Will Ackerman and George Winston--and what could be more classic than that?

--Terry Wood

Listen to Sample Tracks

Thanksgiving Video

Great Chefs - A Southwest Thanksgiving Feast (1992)

Thanksgiving Dinner (Video Cooking Library) (1987)

Video Description
Includes the following recipes: baked turkey oyster dressing apple pecan dressing broccoli timbale sweet potatoes with hot compote scalloped potatoes cranberry sauce pastry shell pumpkin tart mincemeat pie

Making Thanksgiving Special (1996)

Northern Exposure "Thanksgiving" (1993)

Rated: NR
Starring: Rob Morrow, et al.
Director: Jack Bender

Waltons, The - The Thanksgiving Story (1973)
Rated: NR
Starring: Richard Thomas, et al.
Director: Philip Leacock

Video Description
Just prior to the Thanksgiving Holiday, a freak accident leaves John-Boy faced with the possibility of a serious operation.

Thanksgiving Fun for the Whole Family!

Listen to Holiday Music!

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