Monday, December 8, 2008

Gingerbread Man/House

Book Ideas:The Gingerbread Girl by Lisa Campbell Ernst
"Like her older brother, the Gingerbread Boy, who was eventually devoured by a fox, the Gingerbread Girl eludes the many people who would like to eat her but also has a plan to escape her sibling's fate." (Any girl will love this version)
Gingerbread Baby by Jan Brett
"A young boy and his mother bake a gingerbread baby that escapes from their oven and leads a crowd on a chase similar to the one in the familiar tale about a not-so-clever gingerbread man."
Gingerbread Mouse by Katy Bratun
"An accident sends Mouse in search of a new home at Christmas time and she finds what seems to be the perfect one inside of a much larger house, but she meets a new friend with a better idea."

Songs and Rhymes:

5 little Gingerbread Men

5 little gingerbread men lying on a tray.
1 jumped up and ran away!
Catch me, catch me, if you can.
I run really fast.
I’m the gingerbread man!
(continue to count down to 1 little gingerbread man)

Gingerbread Man

Stir a bowl of gingerbread (stir as in a bowl)
Smooth and spicy brown
Roll it with a rolling pin
up and up and down (Pretend to roll)
With a cookie cutter, (pretend to cut out)
make some little men.
Put them in the
oven (place them in the oven)
till half past ten!

Four Gingerbread Men
Four gingerbread men sat on a tray
The first one said, "Let's run away!"
The second one said, "Where will we run?"
The third one said, "We'll have some fun."
The fourth one said, "We'll be eaten if we stay."
So the gingerbread men all ran away.

Activity Ideas:

Idea #1: Decorate a Gingerbread House

Read a story above and decorate a gingerbread house. I made my own from scratch but if you don't want the hassle you can either use graham crackers or buy a pre-made kit (If you have an IKEA close by, they have a real gingerbread house kit for $5.99) Here is the recipe I used for the pieces of the house:


4-41/2 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
2 tsp cinnamon
½ tsp ground cloves
½ tsp ground ginger
pinch of cardamom
pinch of nutmeg

Mix the above ingredients and set aside.

1 stick of butter
½ cup brown sugar
½ cup unsulphured molasses
1 tsp cold water
1 egg

Cream butter, sugar and molasses together. Then add egg, and cold water. Then mix thoroughly. With mixer on low, add flour and spices gradually. Roll dough out with a rolling pin until dough is ¼ inch thick. Cut into desired shapes.

Bake in oven at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes.

Build the house using icing to keep it together. This icing recipe will keep it together like glue, but probably shouldn't be used if you plan on eating it since it has raw eggs in it.

Royal Icing

1 lb. powdered sugar
2 egg whites
¼ (more or less) cup water
½ tsp of cream of tarter

Place all the ingredients in the mixer. Begin at low speed, gradually increasing speed to high. Beat icing until it is thick and fluffy. Use right away. I spoon mine into a zip lock bag and cut the corner tip to use as a frosting bag.

Have a supply of candy ready for decorating.

Let your child decorate however they want.

Idea #2: Gingerbread boy Scavenger Hunt

Read any version of the Gingerbread Man/Boy and then have your child go on a scavenger hunt to find the gingerbread boy. First you will need to make a gingerbread boy out of paper and write 5 clues on small pieces of bright paper. Here is what my clues said:
  • I'm sorry for being knotty, but I had to go to the potty! (hide the next clue in the bathroom)
  • My stomach is grumbling just a smidge; so maybe you'll find me in the fridge. (hide the next clue in the fridge)
  • My feet are getting tired and red; maybe I'll try out your bed. (hide the next clue in their bed)
  • Hey there's no need to rush, I'm just using your toothbrush. (hide the next clue by their toothbrush)
  • Ha, ha, ha, you can't catch me, unless you find the right DVD! (hide the paper gingerbread man inside a DVD case)

Idea #3: Sort and Count Gingerbread Cookies
Read one of the gingerbread books and then sort out the cookies in the box of these seasonal Pepperidge Farm snacks. Put all the daddies together, all the mommies together etc... Then count them and find out which pile has the most.

Idea #4: Gingerbread Man writing activity
Read any version of "The gingerbread man" and then ask your child:
What would you do to catch the Gingerbread Man?
Write the question at the top of a piece of paper and then have your child draw a picture of how they would catch the gingerbread man. When they are all done, label their "story" with a caption.
Idea #5: Cookie cutter Match-up Game
Read one of the books and then play this matching game. You will need several Christmas shaped cookie cutters, a marker, and some paper. Trace the shapes onto some paper before hand. Lay out the paper outlines on the floor. Then give your child the cookie cutters and have them match the shapes by putting the right cookie cutter on top of the correct traced cookie outline.


Linsey said...

I love gingerbread, men, houses, whatever. I can't wait to get to UT so we can make some. Maybe we'll even be able to go to the library and find one of these books too!

Your ideas are wonderful and are saving my sanity...please keep them coming.

hine.T said...

Kahi sold me...especially since I'm clueless when it comes to doing things w/&for my kids! I will be following you for ideas! THanks!