My daughter was assigned a project over the weekend called “Thankful Plate Full.” To complete the project, she had to gather pictures, magazine cut outs, drawings, etc. of things for which she was thankful. For as much as school projects can be a pain in the you-know-what for parents, I was actually excited to help with this one! We began looking through magazines, photos, and the 500 packs of stickers she has accumulated over her five years of life. As I was helping her draw the perfect peanut butter and jelly sandwich I began wondering, “What would I include on my Thankful Plate?” After the year we’ve had it turned out to be a difficult task. There were the basics of course: family, shelter, food… but what else?
I began looking over my 5 year old’s plate to see what she had included so far. Grandparents, Trader Joe’s, Wendy’s, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, and hot chocolate. The girl loves her family but not quite as much as she loves food! After the small chuckle I got out of it, something started to click. All of the items she had included are small, everyday things that likely get overlooked by anyone old enough to have smart phone. As adults, we get so preoccupied with the things we want, we forget to appreciate what is right in front of us. I began thinking about my Thankful Plate again and you know what? I’m thankful for Trader Joe’s too! And Grandparents! (aka emergency babysitters) Also included on my plate: Hot coffee, Christmas lights, Taco Bell, walks in my neighborhood, and music.
Thanksgiving is obviously going to look different this year, so what better time to start a new tradition? It doesn’t take expensive trips, an abundance of food, or a large amount of time to bring your family together. Start with something as small as the Thankful Plate Full project that uses items you likely have in your home already. No children in your home? That’s okay! A fun project focused on gratitude may be just what you need if 2020 has got you feeling anxious, stressed, or just a little gloomy.
I’ve included the simple instructions to create your own Thankful Plate Full project. This project idea came from the wonderful teachers at JCPS!
Thankful Plate Full
- Paper plate
- Pictures, magazine cut outs, stickers, etc.
In the middle of the paper plate, write your name along with Thankful Plate Full (Megan’s Thankful Plate Full). Decorate around the words using pictures, magazine cut outs, drawings, stickers, etc. to show what you’re thankful for this year. Get as creative as you would like! Allow each family member to share what they chose to include on their Thankful Plate.