Fairy Tale Unit: Jack and the Beanstalk

Last week, I wrote a post about all the books that DD (age 8)  has been reading lately. You may have noticed that she really enjoys fairy tales.  She has read a number of Gail Carson Levine’s books including Ella Enchanted  and Fairest (affiliate links). She also LOVES Rump: The True Story of Rumpelstiltskin and Jack: The True Story of Jack and the Beanstalk. (affiliate links)  That got me to thinking about the Fairy Tale Unit we did several years ago. We had a lot of fun with that unit and I thought I’d share a few of those ideas with you again!

Our first fairy tale was Jack and the Beanstalk.  I set up this felt board the night before and had some coloring pages for ED since she’s usually the first one up and she’s always ready to dive into the day!  She was more interested in helping me bake…and sample… and mix… and sample!

We made graham crackers and cut them into castle and cottage parts that I hoped we would put together later in the morning for an edible scene. (Here’s the graham cracker recipe I use.  We love graham crackers!)

We also made some wholemeal bread rolls — and shaped one into the shape of a vine.

Once the kids were up, had eaten and the bread was rising, we headed into the schoolroom. I had some sheets with the main characters that they could color as I read the story.  They were very industrious! They were working on parts to a diorama they put together.

While I was reading, ED also did a number of her activities like bean counting (from Confessions of a Homeschooler — J is for Jellybeans), the letters B and J, not to mention page after page of coloring.


After I read the long (wonderful, descriptive) version, I read this short rhyming version that I got from the Teacherfilebox.  I had taken all the rhyming words, typed them up and printed them out. DD and LD worked together to match up all the words.

They also did quite a bit of writing.  LD had to explain who the villain and hero was (and why).  He also had to write the ending to the story when I explained that after Jack killed the ogre someone notified the police….

Pretty soon we were all really hungry.  We had visions of making a lovely display (the cottage, beans, the vine and the castle), but we ran out of patience.  We all (me included) just wanted to EAT!! So, we propped the graham cracker cottage and castle up with a bread roll, snapped a picture and had tuna melts, fruit and graham crackers with white icing (see the clouds hastily globbed near the castle for the photo???)  for lunch!

I forgot to mention that ED also practiced the letters B and J and made them out of bread dough.

Here are the three dioramas of Jack and the Beanstalk. Jack climbs up the  paper towel tube beanstalk. And below are closeups of their projects.



For this unit, we read stories from Treasury of Classic Children’s Stories. (affiliate link)  The illustrations are beautiful and the kids loved being read to (and eventually when they became proficient readers read these stories for themselves!). I highly recommend this book!
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Disclosure:  Please note that some of the links above are affiliate links, and at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you decide to make a purchase.

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