#CelebrateWithDE Thanksgiving

One of Thanksgiving’s great traditions is storytelling, whether recounting family lore around the dinner table or sharing historical accounts of the earliest celebrations of the holiday. Thanksgiving is a great time to encourage your students to focus on the role of stories in our lives. We hope you and your students have much to be thankful for this year!

Featured Resources

Content Collection: Thanksgiving
Grades K-2, 3-5, 6-8, 9-12, Assorted Resources

Give thanks—for Thanksgiving! This national holiday, celebrated primarily in the United States and Canada, is a day of gratitude for the bounty of the harvest of the previous year.


Celebrate with DE: Thanksgiving(Canadian Version)
Discovery Education Streaming, Math Techbook, Science Techbook, Social Studies Techbook
Grades K-2, 3-5, 6-8, 9-12, Full Video [05:17]

Discusses the process of officially establishing Thanksgiving Day and its many traditions. The segment details the founding of the holiday and the origins of traditions such as the presidential pardon of a turkey.

Learn About the Story of Thanksgiving

Squanto’s Story
Discovery Education Streaming, Social Studies Techbook
Grades K-2, 3-5, Video Segment [02:19]

Squanto helps the Pilgrims farm the land and tells Bradford how he once traveled to England and returned home, only to find that his people had all died from the white man’s disease.


Squanto’s Story and the First Thanksgiving
Discovery Education Streaming, Social Studies Techbook
Grades 6-8, 9-12, Video Segment [04:58]

Unveils the fables surrounding Squanto’s story, revealing the truth about his enslavement in Europe. The segment also debunks the myth that turkey was the meat of choice at the first Thanksgiving.


Stuff You Missed in History Class Podcast: How the First Thanksgiving Worked(Canadian Version)
Discovery Education Streaming
Grades 6-8, 9-12, Podcast [11:19]

Nowadays, Thanksgiving is an official holiday, complete with its own trappings of tradition and mythology. But how much of the conventional Thanksgiving story is true? Join Sarah and Katie as they take a closer look at the first Thanksgiving.


Lead a discussion about what the students learned from the resources above and how storytelling can shape history. Were there any parts of the Thanksgiving story that surprised them? Any myths they’ve thought were true until now? Use the strategy Myth Bustin’ (Canadian Version) to solidify their learning. As an extension, allow the students to develop their own statements to add depth to the exercise. Then, gather students around tables to build excitement for the holiday with an adaptation of the strategy Paper Chat (Canadian Version). For this activity, provide some questions about the history of Thanksgiving and some questions that will prepare students to start conversations and storytelling around their own dinner tables over the holiday break. Share your best conversation starters on social media with #CelebrateWithDE.

Interested in joining classrooms around the world to Celebrate holidays year round? Check out our Timely Content Page for our Virtual Viewing Parties and more Instructional Strategies.


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