Keep reading for some fun activities to go along with the fairy tale The Ninjabread Man. These are designed for preschool, pre-k, and kindergarten and are sure to be a hit with your little learners!
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Our December story of the month is The Ninjabread Man by Katrina Charman and Fabiano Fiorin. This twist on the classic Gingerbread Man fairy tale is so much fun to read & act out with kids!
In this version of the fairy tale, an old man bakes a Ninjabread Man, who defeats each animal that tries to eat him (including a pig, a cow, and chickens). When the fox is about to trick the Ninjabread Man, the old man comes and saves the day…because he’s actually a ninja himself!
There is also another version of this fairy tale where the Ninjabread Man does get eaten in the end!
In this version, an old sensei made a gingerbread man for his ninjas, but when he came out of the oven, he was the Ninjabread Man! The Ninjabread Man defeated each of Sensei’s ninjas…until he came face to face with the Fox, who tricked him and ate him all up!
I’m sharing both of these versions with you so you can choose which one you want to read to your little ones (either choice is great!)
After reading this story, check out these fun Ninjabread Man activities that include Oatmeal Gingerbread cookies, a gingerbread man craft, and a FREE printable size activity.
Add these activities in December (at home or in the classroom!) to help engage your preschoolers in learning fun during this festive time of year!
OATMEAN GINGERBREAD COOKIES
Since The Ninjabread Man is a twist on a classic fairy tale, I wanted to make a cookie that was a twist on the classic gingerbread recipe. This Oatmeal Gingerbread Cookie recipe was just what I was looking for!
This recipe was created by my friend Ashley Munro from Ashley Munro Nutrition, LLC. She’s a dietician and Intuitive Eating counselor who also went to culinary school…and she creates the most amazing recipes!
- 1 1/2 cup white whole wheat flour
- 3/4 cup quick oats
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon clove
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 6 tablespoons butter, melted & cooled
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 cup molasses
- 1 egg
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- In a medium bowl, mix together the flour, oats, baking soda, spices, and salt.
- In a separate bowl, mix together your melted & cooled butter and brown sugar.
- Using a hand mixer, beat butter and sugar together until smooth. Then add the egg, vanilla, and molasses. Mix until smooth. (Color and texture resembles caramel.)
- Add your dry ingredients to the butter/sugar mixture and mix well to combine.
- Because the dough is slightly sticky, place it in the fridge to set up for about 15-20 minutes.
- While the dough is in the fridge, preheat the oven to 350F degrees.
- Remove chilled dough.
- Using a small scoop, measure out cookies and roll into balls. Slightly push down on the dough ball to make a cookie shape.
- Place on cookie sheet lined with silicone mats and bake for 12-13 minutes.
- Let cool on cookie sheet and then transfer to cooling rack.
We followed all of the steps in Ashley’s recipe to make the dough, but when it came time to put them on the baking sheet, we first rolled them out and used a gingerbread man cookie cutter so they would be shaped like a gingerbread man…or ninjabread man in this case!
Note: The dough is SUPER sticky, so we just used our hands to push it out flat instead of using a rolling pin.
Then we baked them according to Ashley’s directions & they turned out great! Out of all of our Ninjabread Man activities, this one was our favorite!
GINGERBREAD MAN CRAFT
This simple gingerbread man craft is fun for kids of all ages & can be used in so many ways!
First, cut out a gingerbread man shape from paper. We used brown and white paper. Then, you have a few choices:
- Have your little one decorate it with markers or crayons
- Have your little one use construction paper (or tissue paper) to glue onto the gingerbread man (they can either tear or cut the construction paper or tissue paper, which helps them develop those fine motor skills that are so important for this age!)
You can use this opportunity to talk about colors, shapes, and even patterns. Then have your little one glue googly eyes to complete their gingerbread (or ninjabread) friend!
GINGERBREAD MAN SIZE ORDER
The last of our Ninjabread Man activities is a FREE size order activity. This activity is great for preschoolers to work on visual discrimination and using comparative adjectives (big, bigger, biggest).
Print and cut the gingerbread pieces, then have your little one put them in order from biggest to smallest. You can also add them to a sensory bin (like this Gingerbread Man Cloud Dough Sensory Bin) before your little one puts them in the correct order.
This activity is free to download from our FREE Activity Library. The FREE Activity Library is password protected. If you’d like to get access, you can subscribe HERE and the password will be emailed to you. If you’re already subscribed, you should already have the password. The password is updated every so often, so make sure you stay subscribed so you don’t miss any of our freebies!
Have you read The Ninjabread man? Do you have any fun gingerbread activities for preschoolers or kindergarteners that I should add to our list? Let me know! Comment below or find me on Instagram [@littleslovelearningblog] to share!