Little Red Hen Unit Study

This week we read, often, The Little Red Hen.  Our main topic focuses were being helpful, and "in the kitchen".

There are many versions to this classic story.  The one we happen to own is the Golden Book version.


It was fun watching the kids' reactions during the first reading and then their change with the 2nd reading and so on.  Both Emma and Connor were in agreement with the goose, duck, cat and pig in not wanting to help the Little Red Hen.   When we got to the end where the Little Red Hen declares only SHE will eat the bread, Emma's eyes got so big in astonishment and she immediately declared, "I'm going to help now!!"  So funny!

Usually, I get stressed when I'm in the kitchen and I don't allow the kids in.  I worked hard on my kitchen snobbery and allowed the kids to help out, when appropriate.  There is just too much wonderful learning to be had to not allow kids to help and observe.

We intended to make bread, as the hen did, but we learned we had some key ingredients missing from our pantry.  Since the main point this week was "in the kitchen" and being helpful, we chose other things to work together on.  

It happened to be snowing outside, so we embraced the chance and made Snow Ice-Cream again.  Last year I followed a recipe I found online at all-recipes.  I thought it way over done in sweetness.  This year we just did our own thing. 
1 large bowl of fresh fallen unpacked snow
2 cups of milk
1 tsp homemade vanilla
1/2 cup sugar

Mix milk, vanilla and sugar to dissolve the sugar.  Add it to the snow, mixing until it resembles a creamy texture.  Scoop into bowls and add sprinkles.  Enjoy!
Little Sammy would take one bite, go bug-eyed, and add 2-3 more scoops for himself then repeat.  It was so funny to me.

recipe for snow ice cream
This was just a super easy way to introduce "cooking" in the kitchen to a preschooler.  Emma helped determine the line for 2 cups and learned what vanilla was.  Sam helped stir.  Connor helped locate pantry items and learn where they go.

Throughout the week we continued to read our little book, and added in some art and story telling (sequencing).

Little Red Hen Story Props
Later in the week I asked the kids "who will help me make bread!?"  They quickly replied "I will!"  We still didn't have the right ingredients for regular bread so we made zucchini bread.  Yummy!  The kids were tasked with grating the zucchini with a cheese grater.  They helped measure - and we talked about fractions.  "We need 2 cups of flour, and I'm using a 1/2 scoop.  How many scoops should I use?"  That was really hard for Connor (age 7), but it was a good example of how math is used everywhere!

We also learned about homophones.  Flour, not flower!

Connor was amazed how disgusting zucchini bread looked and was alarmed that we were supposed to eat this - which was also a good lesson in the science of ingredients vs heat - the end result looks nothing like this.

Kids in the Kitchen

For a 3rd time, we gathered in the kitchen for a lengthy but very rewarding task.  Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes with Cream Cheese frosting!

We roasted a little pumpkin, which according to Connor needs to go in the oven "forever!".  Once forever was up, we pureed the pumpkin and finally we were able to mix our ingredients.  Only to then have to have another cook time.  Sheer torture, I'm telling ya.

In the end, mom was right (when am I not right!?), and these cupcakes were well worth the work and waiting.

During this unit study we were concentrating on the character traits "servant heart" or "helpful".  So I asked Connor who he'd like half of our cupcakes to go to.  We picked a wonderful family and shared our spoils.

For extra reading we read Cows in the Kitchen .  This is a favorite book of Sam's and Emma's (ages 2 and 4).  Another favorite series of Sam's and Emma's are the books by P.K. Hallinan.  For this week we read Let's Be Helpful .

We also read one book over at We Give Books, called See How They Grow - Chick.  (you can do a search for the book once logged in, or signed up). also has a Little Red Hen interactive book.  If you want more ideas for books on being helpful, or servant hearted, check out the tab at the top right, "Books of Character".

Check out my Pinterest board to see all the other great ideas I found for this unit.
Homeschool: Unit Study - The Little Red Hen on Pinterest.

Linking up with:
Hip Homeschool Moms 

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  1. Yum that looks good! Now that my kids are older I miss the times in the kitchen cooking with them. My 13 yr old now makes dinner 2 times a week and her older sister is the family baker. I'm happy our days of cooking instilled that in them. My boys also know how to cook but don't go beyond the nights they are scheduled to do it. I'm visiting from Weekly Wrap Up!

  2. Oh wow, I remember the days of FIAR! :)


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