Thanksgiving Traditions
with Tweens and Teens

Thanksgiving is here. The turkey is roasting, the table is set and the relatives are just getting in. The children are playing tag, while the teens are…wait, where are the teens? Has anyone seen the teens!?! Oh, there they are. Sitting in the corner with that mixture of boredom and bemusement that sets in around twelve and leaves when they’re walking out the door for college.

While younger kids are happy to dive into family traditions on Thanksgiving, it’s common for tweens and teens to feel like they’ve aged out of them. Have no fear though, we’ve collected the best ways to get older kids interacting with the family and enjoying themselves!

Pass It On:
While some kids take to cooking like they’re auditioning for Master Chef, others require a bit more prodding. Thanksgiving is a great time to get them in on the action and pass on some of those treasured family memories. After all, how many chances will you really get to teach them how to cook a turkey? Best of all, who couldn’t use a little bit of help when cooking a massive dinner: “I’ll teach you how to make grandma’s famous green bean casserole, but first, chop those carrots.”
Catch the Fun:
For tweens and teens, nothing catches their interest like a little healthy competition. One of our favorite games is a long-distance ball catch with a couple of recycled SunnyD bottles. The game is easy to set up, just flip two empty 64 oz. bottles of SunnyD upside-down and cut the bottoms off to create a funnel shape. Next, grab a team of two and have them stand facing each other. Give one player a tennis ball and have them toss it to their partner, who must catch it in their bottle. With each successful catch, the pair takes a step backwards. Whichever team makes it the furthest distance apart wins
Give Back:
While Thanksgiving is a time to be thankful for what we have, it’s also the perfect chance to give back to those who have less. A family trip to the local food bank can be a perfect chance to bring you closer together and instill good values that your children will carry for the rest of their lives. Plus, with college admissions just around the corner, helping your kids become more thoughtful and well-rounded is the perfect way to stand out from other applicants!