Sunday, December 9, 2012

Gingerbread House Math!

What’s more childhood Christmas than GINGERBREAD houses?  Next Saturday I’m starting a new tradition, inviting some friends over for a cookie exchange and make-your-own-gingerbread-house  party.  Time to get out the graham crackers, frosting and candy!

This week my class will be making “gingerbread houses” too—using LOTS of math!   The kids had so much fun with this activity last year, and took a lot of pride in their paper house creations.  I loved it because this simple activity had them multiplying, adding, subtracting, and doing real-world math!

So just how can a simple gingerbread house connect to math?  I give each student a gingerbread house template and the challenge to decorate it beautifully—with one twist.  They have a candy-spending budget, and each peppermint, gumdrop, and candy cane has a cost.   Students have to plan which candy decorations they will use, total their cost on a “receipt” worksheet, and solve for their change.  Real-world, right?  Then, after they’ve done the math they take out crayons, markers or colored pencils and start decorating!  It’s LOTS of fun.

I’ve put this file, My Gingerbread House Multiplication Activity Pack, on my TPT store.  There are two different versions included, one for learners just starting out with multiplication (facts 3-11) and one for more advanced students (double-digit multiplication).  Directions, the gingerbread house template, and a rubric are all included!

My kids will be creating these math masterpieces this week, and who knows?  Maybe their teacher will bring in some gingerbread cookies to munch on while they work…. J  


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