Quick! How many “If You Give a….” books can you name? You might give a moose a muffin, a pig a pancake, a mouse a cookie, or a dog a donut! It seems like every time I turn around, there is another book in this wonderful series. The book, “If You Give a Dog a Donut,” chronicles the adventures of a dog and the chain reaction that happens when you give him a donut!
Enjoy this book with your kids, and then extend the learning with these fun, “If You Give a Dog a Donut,” preschool activities like homemade cloud dough donuts, journaling, and more.
If You Give a Dog a Donut by Laura Numeroff Lesson Plan features three unique activities to use after sharing the book with your students. The cloud dough brings in sensory play, while the creative writing piece gives children a chance to comprehend the story even more by imagining, “What if….” Finally, delving into facts and science of real dogs tops it off for a well-rounded set of lessons from just one book!
Benefits of Reading to Preschoolers
Read-alouds foster imagination, expand background knowledge and vocabulary, and contribute to understanding concepts of print. Although the “If You Give a Dog a Donut,” reading level may be above that of your average preschooler or kindergartener, it is on par with their comprehension level.
Reading aloud to young children:
- Expands vocabulary.
- Enhances creativity and imagination.
- Boosts independent reading skills.
- Improves writing skills.
- Improves memory skills when combined with a reading journal.
“If You Give a Dog a Donut,” is a fun learning opportunity for younger children. The three simple activities will draw the interest of preschoolers and nurture a love of books and reading.
You can use Cloud Dough Pretend Donuts Craft as a special treat for your preschoolers to enjoy while you read aloud If You Give a Dog a Donut during learning time.
The food journaling activity helps preschoolers engage in a creative dialogue while advancing creative writing skills.
Finally, exploring the question, “What do Dogs Eat?” will help your preschoolers discern between facts and fiction.
Wouldn’t it be fun to invite a real dog into the classroom to test some theories?! (allergies permitting)
Engaging our youngest learner with entertaining books sets the scene for future motivation to learn to read and enjoy books! “If You Give a Dog a Donut,” and other books, lend themselves perfectly to activities like journaling, food creation, and simple food studies.
Feel free to adjust each “If You Give a Dog a Donut,” activity for preschool to suit your learners.
Activity 1 – Cloud Dough Recipe
This all-natural (edible) cloud dough recipe will not disappoint! It’s easy to whip up a batch, and your students will love manipulating this silky smooth cloud dough with cornstarch and a few other ingredients.
You can also try making 2 ingredient cloud dough by leaving out the optional oil. How do you make cloud dough with hair conditioner? You can use the same recipe, using conditioner instead of the whipped cream.
- 3 cups of whipped cream
- 1 cup of corn starch
- 1 tablespoon of cooking oil (optional)
- small round cups
- candy sprinkles
*Food coloring is optional.
*You can also try making cloud dough by mixing baby oil with flour (wheat flour works, if you want a ‘sandy’ color).
1. In a bowl, mix the whipped cream topping and corn starch. Mix well until a soft and crumbly dough forms. The gluten-free cloud dough should mold nicely in your hands when manipulated.
2. If the dough is too crumbly and dry, add a tablespoon of oil at a time until the consistency is appropriate for shaping. If it is too sticky, add a teaspoon of corn starch at a time and mix until appropriate.
3. Once the cloud dough is just right, sprinkle some corn starch on the surface and roll out the cloud dough DIY. Use a cup to press small circles. We used the lid of a glue stick to cut out the small inside circle, creating a donut shape.
4. Sprinkle the top of your cloud dough donuts with candy sprinkles. Now it’s time for sensory play with the donuts and other cloud dough activities.
Activity 2 – If You Give a Dog Some Dog Food Journaling Activity
Now that we know what would happen if you give a dog a donut, what about if you gave a dog some dog food? Would the same hilarity ensue?
- notebook paper
1. Re-read the book, “If You Give a Dog a Donut,” by Laura Numeroff and Felicia Bond, illustrator. Talk about the humorous events that follow.
2. What would a dog do if you gave him dog food? Would he still ask for apple juice? Would he be off on a backyard adventure? Discuss and brainstorm ideas as a group.
3. Using your notebook paper, write a brief story about If You Gave a Dog Some Dog Food. Try to make it humorous like author Laura Numeroff does! See if you can put your own silly spin on the story. Younger children may wish to draw an illustration instead.
4. Share your creative stories when done!
Activity 3 – What Do Dogs Eat? Simple Study Activity
- nonfiction dog/dog care books
- notebook paper
Puppy Training for Kids: Teaching Children the Responsibilities and Joys of Puppy Care, Training, and CompanionshipHow to Care for Your Dog: A Color & Learn Guide for Kids (Dover Children’s Activity Books)Our Very Own Dog: Taking Care of Your First Pet (Read and Wonder)Battat – Dalmatian Vet Kit – Interactive Vet Clinic and Cage Pretend Play for Kids (15 pieces)How to Speak Dog: A Guide to Decoding Dog LanguageMelissa & Doug Feeding & Grooming Pet Care Play Set (24 Pieces, Great Gift for Girls and Boys – Best for 3, 4, and 5 Year Olds)
1. Take the time to skim and browse through your nonfiction dog books. See if you can find information about diet and what foods are good for them.
2. Make a list of foods that are good for dogs. Some examples include dog food, ground turkey, carrots, and peas.
3. Look up a recipe for healthy homemade dog treats. Save it for later.
4. When time permits, make a batch of homemade dog treats. Donate them to a local animal shelter or serve them to your own dog.
Get as creative as you like with “If You Give a Dog a Donut,” activities for kindergarten or preschool. It’s an engaging, fun story to share. Keep the fun going with more hands-on, book-based activities!
If You Give a Cat a Cupcake (If You Give… Books)If You Give a Pig a PancakeIf You Give a Moose a MuffinIf You Take a Mouse to SchoolIf You Give a Dog a DonutIf You Give a Mouse a Brownie (If You Give… Books)If You Take a Mouse to the MoviesHappy Birthday, Mouse! (If You Give…)If You Give a Mouse a Cookie BookIf You Give a Pig a Party
Planning for a Community Helpers Theme? We’ve done all the work for you!
We now have interactive thematic lesson plans for toddlers (18-35 months) AND preschoolers (3-5 years)! Get ready for fun and learning with unit lesson plans for your COMMUNITY HELPERS THEME. Explore a variety of themed hands-on activities! Easy to follow lesson plans include activity modifications and adaptations to meet the needs of all learners. For more information, click on the graphics below: