If you are gathering with family this weekend to celebrate Thanksgiving, giving thanks for the year’s harvest, we wish you the best.
In those quiet moments, you might want to share stories of thanksgiving with your children. I find that my children become more aware of themselves and their surroundings when faced with a cultural or historical contrasts. Both of these stories will help bring up such contrasts.
A Pioneer Thanksgiving
Barabara Greenwood, A Pioneer Thanksgiving: A Story of Harvest Celebrations in 1841 (Kids Can Press: 1999).
This story of a Canadian pioneer family, the Robertsons, combines their preparations for their harvest festival with activities and historical information for children.
Haudenosaunee Thanksgiving Address
Thanksgiving Address: Greetings to the Natural World (Six Nations Museum: 1993).
This traditional address of thanksgiving for Haudensosaunee (Iroquois) acknowledges the ever-widening circles of concern, beginning with the People then the Earth and so on. Each section of the address is punctuated with a version of “Now our minds are one.”
This version of the address in English is available through the Smithsonian Institution Museum of the American Indian. This is a contemporary address still given among Haudeosaunee (Six Nations).
How can we teach our children to be thankful? I share how I have tried to model thanks with my family in “Raising Thankful Children.”