Change your dramatic play center into a Bakery and embed a ton of learning into their play! Bakery is a fun theme to do in your dramatic play center anytime during the year and extra fun during the holidays. Everyone is baking cookies, pies, and all sorts of yummy treats. And if they aren't the ones baking, they will be visiting a bakery. Want all the bakery printables? Go grab Bakery Dramatic Play.
So this is what our bakery looked like at the END of our 6 week theme. Yes, I said 6 weeks. The first week, we set up the bakery. Each week after we focused on different items found in a bakery. Week two was cookies, week three was cupcakes/cakes, week four was donuts/milk, week five was bread, and week six was gingerbread. Each week I slowly added props related to our weekly theme to keep students excited and interested in the bakery.
This is the baker's shelf at the END of our theme. We started with JUST the basics so students could learn how to play with and use the props appropriately. I added a ton of empty boxes of real ingredients to add environmental print so students were "reading" the boxes as they play. The photos on the wall are from wall calendars.
The bakers used play dough to create all sorts of yummy treats. I used a basic cook play dough recipe with no food coloring added. By using dough, students were strengthening their fine motor muscles as well as their upper arms and shoulders.
Week 3, I added these icing bags and empty icing containers. I painted a few cotton balls and placed them in a baggie with the zipper part cut off. Then I put a rubber band around the middle.
They LOVED using the icing bags to decorate their cupcakes, cakes, and cookies!
Students always make a ton of the props for all the dramatic play themes we do and this theme is no different. When students make the props, they are learning and becoming more invested in their play. Plus you don't have to go out and buy a ton of props.
Students made paper cookies, cakes, cinnamon rolls, and donuts. In the art center, students cut out shapes, painted(iced) their paper cookies, and added glitter (sprinkles). I put out a cookie tray for a drying rack!
Look at our bakery case was filled with all kinds of delicious goodies. The items on the top shelf were all made from Model Magic. You could also use air dry clay to make items for the bakery.
Every bakery has to make holiday and birthday cakes, right. And what do holiday cakes and birthday cakes have on the top? WORDS! So students were writing during play!
Make a cake book out of an old binder so customers can order the cake they want. As customers looked through the book they "read" the words on the cakes.
The bakery counter is where customers ordered, picked up, and payed. The bakery assistant worked the counter. For small group, students created a bakery collage from magazines and ads to decorate the front of the counter.
When customer ordered the bakery assistant filled out and order form..
Customers had to pay for their yummy goodies.
When the customer payed, the baker's assistant wrote a receipt. Students LOVED writing receipts from those rolls of paper. I always add a number line for support next to the cash register.
Isn't this delivery truck the cutest! I just added a few signs, bakery boxes, bags, and yummy treats to a shopping cart. The delivery driver would drive to other centers selling and delivering orders to other students. It is a perfect role for those kids who need to move.
The bakery was a busy place as you can see. Students were constantly building theme vocabulary and conversational skills during pretend play.
Students were sharing, waiting, taking turns, solving problems, sharing space, working together, controlling their impulses, and building self regulating as they play. Look at all those social skills students were developing! Dramatic play is so important for little learners.
Want to take the bakery theme all over your classroom? I've made Sweets Math and Literacy Centers for you!
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Are you doing a Gingerbread theme? Just click on the image and check out these posts!