Gingerbread Literacy Unit
Whether it is December and you are looking for a non-holiday specific unit, or you are in a slump looking to spruce up your fairy tale unit, you have landed in the right spot…. the GINGERBREAD LITERACY UNIT! Students will LOVE it and teachers love the ease of planning that accompanies it. During this hands on unit, students will dive into different versions of The Gingerbread Man while pulling out important elements and comparing fractured versions to the original.
Each day, students will add a new gingerbread man to their gingerbread house. Students love this because after doing all of their work pulling out fairy tale elements, they get to decorate their gingerbread men (or women) like the ones they saw in the story.
We always do the original story all together. This will be my first whole group lesson, followed by independent work time to complete their gingerbread man graphic organizer/decorating. We then do another story together whole group the next day, we complete our gingerbread man, and then we compare/contrast. Students are then gradually released throughout the unit to do the project more independently or in groups. I break students up into small mixed groups differentiated by reading levels. I usually have about four students in a group and I allow them to select which story they want to read and analyze each day. I find that by giving students a choice in what book they get to read, they have more ownership and excitement about their learning.
As the unit goes on, students are more independent on comprehension which frees up my time to do various phonics and grammar lessons. I also throw in various STEM challenges to spruce up their excitement levels. Another way I get engagement is by having students bring in any versions of the story that they have at home. Students LOVE to share books from their house, and parents love being able to help out.
Writing is also a huge component in this unit. Each week, we go through the writing process with a different genre of writing. We write our own narrative (a gingerbread narrative), we write an informative piece (a how-to, with various options on making a gingerbread house or man), and we also write an opinion piece (on what gingerbread story we think is best, and why). Students LOVE that we get to do gingerbread activities all day and are always asking for even more!
We end the unit by making gingerbread houses. Students complete this activity in groups and they absolutely love it. While we complete this literacy unit, we also have a gingebread math unit that is very engaging in which students are “opening their own gingerbread workshop.” Hop on over to my blog post about gingerbread math workshop to see how that is run.
You can snag all of the resources you saw in this post in my store by clicking here. Do you have a gingerbread unit, week, or month at your school? I’d love to hear your thoughts and ideas on it below. Please feel free to drop any questions below as well. Have a great week!