Let Them Take Part in the Special Day by Contributing Their Own Decoration
Children love to feel like they are apart of the hustle and bustle of any holiday or celebration. Allowing them to help with the decorating plans by making the Thanksgiving placements makes them feel important and adds a very special touch to your Thanksgiving Feast. A classic Thanksgiving placemat, the construction paper weaved placemat, is simple and easy enough for an older child to do on their own. A younger child may need adult help, but they can still get the hang of the weaving. . Take a large piece of construction and cut vertical slits about 2 inches from the top and bottom and about 2 inches all the way across. Then you will cut strips of other colored construction papers and simply weave them through the slits. On the first row, start your weaving going over the paper slit and then under and then on the second row start weaving under the first slit. You can secure the edges down with a glue stick or Elmer’s glue to finish the placemat.
Another great idea is to allow your children to cut out and paste together their own turkey placemats. Start with a brown circle cut from construction paper and add an orange beak and eyes. Then take red, orange, and yellow construction paper and cut feather shapes and glue them to the back of the circle. Be sure to make them large enough that a guest can fit a plate over it if they don’t choose to save the placemat.
Once again a large piece of construction paper is your main ingredient of this Thanksgiving placemat idea for your child to make. Allow your child to choose a background color for the place mat. On a brown piece of paper help your child trace their hand and cut it out. Then glue craft feathers to the fingers and add a beak and face. To protect the feathers of this Thanksgiving placemat, use clear contact paper to cover the back and then front of it.
For another handprint keepsake, help your child trace their hand onto a piece of fusible webbing that can be found at most craft stores and even in the craft department at Wal-Mart. Cut out the handprint and remove the paper backing. Then iron the handprint onto a store bought placemat or a square of fabric to be turned into your Thanksgiving placemat. You then need to either blanket stitch the handprint by hand or use your sewing machine to satin stitch around the edges to prevent any fraying in the wash. This idea uses a lot less child involvement, but they will fee like they have contributed a ton.
If you are making your Thanksgiving placemat from scratch you can allow your child to create a fantastic keepsake that can be used at the Thanksgiving table as well. Allow your child to draw an elaborate picture depicting the story of Thanksgiving. This is also a good opportunity to teach them about this historical holiday as well. Take their drawing and scan into your computer or have a printing shop help you out. Then, print the image of your child’s Thanksgiving drawing onto a sheet of fabric transfer paper. Remember that you will have to reverse the image before printing. Following the instructions on the transfer paper envelope, carefully iron your image onto the top of the placement. Once it has cooled and been set for about 24 hours, it will be ready to use and will stand up in the wash. You can transfer your image onto a store bought placemat but be sure it does not have any sort of coating on the surface. It needs to be uncoated cotton or a cotton/polyester blend.
Your family and guests will love the Thanksgiving placemats that were made by your very proud child. It adds a real feeling of family and togetherness on such a special day.