IMG_1025As Winter Break approached, I knew I needed to incorporate activities that engaged my students.  Since I have multiple versions of The Gingerbread Man, I decided to read a few, have the students compare and contrast versions, and incorporate writing activities.  This was seen as fun by the students (they looked forward to a new story each day) and incorporated learning standards as well!

I started by reading the original Gingerbread Man so we knew the basic story.  After reading the story, we created a short summary.  We then read 4 other versions, and I had more stories available for students to read during independent reading time; I also gave them access to QR codes to listen to stories on their iPads (this was definitely a hit).  After reading each story, we summarized each.  This allowed us to begin comparing and contrasting the characters, setting, and plot.

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After reading the different stories, students worked with a partner to compare and contrast 2 different versions of The Gingerbread Man.  They worked hard, used the books to check details, and came up with great ideas!  Additionally, they wrote a letter to the Gingerbread Man giving him advice how to prevent being eaten.  This was challenging for some to take the perspective of another character.  Finally, students had the chance to write their own version of a Gingerbread Man story.  They were very creative coming up with characters and setting.  It’s fun stepping back and watching the students be excited about their learning!

Overall, I would say this unit was a success.  Next time, I’m going to have more copies of the books accessible for students to read and use for text evidence during the activities.  It’s fun to do something different for a change of pace for both me and the students.  I have different versions of more fairy tales and folktales I hope to share with them later in the year!

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