Young kids love reading different versions of Gingerbread stories. The “Gingerbread Baby” by Jan Brett is no exception. In this version, it is the baby gingerbread that runs away with people and animals chasing after him. Our kids love “the baby gingerbread” and often cheer for him to evade those trying to capture him! It is a great addition to Gingerbread Theme activities at home or in the classroom!
Gingerbread Cookie Cutter and “Splatter” Paintings
Materials needed: White and Assorted Colors of Washable Tempera Paint, Paint Smocks (or old T-shirts to protect clothing), Paintbrushes or Q-tips, Paper Plates or Paint Trays, Assorted Seasonal Stickers, a Gingerbread Cookie Cutter for each child or small group). and Brown Construction Paper (one per child).
Put white paint on the paint trays (or paper plates) and demonstrate for the children how to use the gingerbread cookie cutter to make paint prints. Metal cookie cutters do not “print” as well for us as plastic ones do. Tell the children they can make gingerbread prints on their paper however they wish. When the children are done printing, show the children how to GENTLY use their paintbrushes (or Q-tips) to splatter white paint around their paper for a “snow effect.” The children can also use paintbrushes or Q-tips to paint colored buttons and eyes for each of the printed gingerbread men (we let our white prints DRY BEFORE adding features as it keeps the children from “smearing” their gingerbread prints while adding the buttons and eyes.) Let the gingerbread men dry thoroughly before adding seasonal sticker decorations. Many dollar and hobby stores carry gingerbread stickers and foam cut-outs that are inexpensive, but fun for the children to use.
Materials needed: One Gingerbread Man House Tracing (file linked above) per child and crayons/markers/pencils.
For each of the rows, have the children trace the path to help the gingerbread man get to the house. There are two different pages in the file above that will allow the children to practice on separate “paths.”
Gingerbread Baby Template - Gingerbread Template
The template linked above can be used in many different ways. Below are just a FEW suggestions:
NUMBERS: Print the file, laminate (or cover with clear contact paper), and write any number on the back of the cut-outs. Have the children place stickers or candy pieces on the gingerbread to correspond to the number on the back. The gingerbread can also be labeled with a number and the children could then count a corresponding number of gingerbread men from a separate basket (we use clothespins and have the children clip gingerbread men to the numbered ones.) It is great practice for one-to-one correspondence and fine motor development.
LETTERS: Label the gingerbread men with any letters that have been introduced to the children. Use uppercase/lowercase or a mixture of both. The children can match uppercase letters to uppercase letters, lowercase letters to lowercase letters, or uppercase letters to their corresponding lowercase letter.
SHAPES: Label one gingerbread with a shape that has been introduced to the children. Have the children search in the classroom (or at home) for shapes that correspond to the one on their gingerbread.
COLORS: Place colored dot stickers on the gingerbread men. Have the children match the colored dots on the gingerbread men. For older children, write the color WORDS on the gingerbread men and have them match color words to the corresponding colored dots.
For a complete Gingerbread Man Thematic Unit, visit The Preschool Toolbox Blog!