The Doorbell Rang, by Pat Hutchins


  • Cookie page cut out
  • A small box of cookies, enough for 1-2 per child
  • small drinking cups and spoons for mixing
  • Large zip-lock of cornstarch, flour, salt, dirt, sand, etc.
  • Small pitcher of water


  • Tea (a hot drink that people like with cookies)
  • Starving (really, really hungry)
  • Enormous (really, really big-huge)
  •  Fair (to do according to the being nice rules)

Before Reading the Story

Ask the children if they have ever helped their parent to bake. What did they help to bake? Do they remember the steps that they took? Give the children a moment to talk about any experience they may have had and then tell them that you are all going to make pretend cookies. Have the children act out the following; Get your bowl and place it in your lap. Pour in 2 cups of flour. Break in 4 eggs. Stir your batter. Add a little milk and stir some more. Tell the children if they want chocolate chip cookies, now would be the time to pour them in. Stir your pretend batter one more time and then scoop from the bowl how many children you have today (ie 17). Pretend to put the cookies in the oven, remind the children to be safe as the oven is hot. While your pretend cookies are baking, sing C is For Cookie. Can the children think of other words that start with C? Sing about several other items also. Now tell the children that the cookies are done, can you smell them? They smell delicious. Have the children pretend to take them out of the oven and eat one. What kind of cookie did each child make? Ask them to share one with their neighbor. Remind them to thank each other for sharing their yummy pretend cookies with each other.

Creative Arts/Dramatic Play;participates in a variety of dramatic play activities that become more extended and complex.

Reading the Story

                  Each time you say “No one makes cookies like Grandma” have the children make a doorbell sound (ding-dong).  When you get to the page where each child has only one cookie on their plate and the doorbell rings, ask the children why everyone was looking at the door but not answering it.

Language/Listening & Understanding; demonstrates increasing ability to attend to and understand conversations, stories, songs, and poems. And Approaches to Learning/Reasoning & Problem-Solving; develops increasing abilities to classify, compare, and contrast objects, events, and experiences.

After Reading the Story

                  Talk to the children about sharing.  Bring in a box of real cookies and divide them equally among the children.  Break some in half if you have to make sure everyone gets the same amount.  Talk about being fair and even.  Give some examples of when children have done something fair.  (Roger was being really fair at breakfast when he only filled his juice cup to the line so that there would be some for the next person.  Kerry was fair when she let Tammie in line because Tammie’s name was called first.

Social & Emotional Development/Social Relationships; shows progress in developing friendships with peers. AND Mathematics/Number & Operations; begins to use one-to-one correspondence in counting objects and matching groups of objects.


Cover the science table with newspaper. Put out the small cups and spoons. Show the children how to scoop a small amount of flour, etc. into their cup and add abit of water. Stir it around. What happens to the flour? Try adding a bit of water to a variety of substances. Do they become sticky, runny, thick? Let the children play with mixing different substances for different results. Pretend that you are mixing cookie doughs.

Science/Scientific Skills & Methods; develops increased ability to observe and discuss common properties, differences, and comparisons among objects and materials.

Music and Movement;

                  Play Count and Shout with the children.  Call out an action command and a number.  The children then must do the action while counting.  (Hop on both feet three times! 1-2-3. Flap your arms like a bird 5 times!  Jump like a frog 3 times!  Clap your hands 4 times!  Lift your knees 6 times!)

Mathematics/Number & Operations; begins to use one-to-one correspondence in counting objects and matching groups of objects.

Use 5 of your Chocolate Cookie cut-outs to do the following poem. Have the children act out.

Five Chocolate Chip Cookies

Five chocolate chip cookies, which I adore,

In came my mother, and then there were four.

Four chocolate chip cookies, that’s plenty for me,

Oh!  Here comes my father, now there’s just three.

Three chocolate chip cookies, they’ll have to do,

Oh no!  Here comes my brother, now there’s just two!

Two chocolate chip cookies, I better grab and run!

Too late! Sister is here and now there’s just one.

One little chocolate chip cookie, well its better than none.

I’ll take tiny little nibbles, that will be more fun!

Yum, yum

            Play, Who Stole the Cookies from the Cookie Jar?

Who stole the cookies from the cookie jar?

(Name a child) stole the cookies from the cookie jar.

Who me?  Yes you.  Couldn’t be.

Then who stole the cookies form the cookie jar?

(Name another child) stole the cookies from the cookie jar.

Who me?  Yes you.  Couldn’t be.

Then who……..

Language Development/Listening & Understanding; demonstrates increasing ability to attend to and understand conversations, stories, songs, and poems.


                  As the children build with blocks today, ask them to add one more, three more, zero more blocks to their building.  Watch to see if they know how many objects make up a number.

Mathematics/Number & Operations; develops increases abilities to combine, separate and name “how many” concrete objects.


                  Tell the children that you are going to pretend to make sugar cookies. Cut out 6 inch circles from poster board or heavy construction paper. Give the children light brown paint with salt mixed in and have them paint their cookie shapes. Ask the children what they think the salt is doing to the paint? As the paint dries, the salt will sparkle.

Science/Scientific Knowledge; shows increased awareness and beginning understanding of changes in materials and cause-effect relationships.

Library and Writing

                  Make your own The Doorbell Rang book.  Ask each child to draw a picture of someone, or something, inside the door frame paper.  Attach a door to the front of each child’s page and the words Ding-Dong.  Put all the pages together into a classroom book. As you read it, say DIng-Dong and then open the door and tell who, what is there. (Ding-Dong, Alicia was at the door. Come on in! Ding-Dong, an elephant was a the door. Come on in!).

Literacy/Early Writing;begins to represent stories and experiences through pictures, dictations, and in play.

Sand and Water

Fill your table up with warm water and soap today. Explain that after one bakes, one must wash the dishes. Add some play dishes, bowls, and spoons.

Physical Health & Development/Health Status & practices; builds awareness and ability to follow basic health and safety rules such as fire safety, traffic and pedestrian safety, and responding appropriately to potentially harmful objects, substances, and activities.

Dramatic Play

Ask the children if they can remember what the mom was doing in the story (mopping the floor)? If you have access to a child’s sized mop, let the children try their hand at this chore. Also small brooms for sweeping.

Approaches to Learning/Initiative & Curiosity; chooses to participate in an increasing variety of tasks and activities.

Math and Manipulatives

                  Encourage the children to use materials and divide them equally among themselves.  Card games are good for this as you must go around the circle, one for you, one for you, one for you, and one for me.  One for you, one for you, one for you, and one for me.

Mathematics/Number & Operations; begins to use one-to-one correspondence in counting objects and matching groups of objects.

Outdoor Play

                  Add a little water to the dirt and let the children make mud cookies.  Let them use old cookie sheets or trays to put them on.  They can use natural materials to decorate their cookies.

Creative Arts/Dramatic Play; shows growing creativity and imagination in using materials and in assuming different roles in dramatic play situations.


                  Talk to the children about what it means to have more, less, or equal amounts.  Ask the children to each grab a handful of a manipulative (unifix, chains, bears).  Have them count the number of manipulatives they were able to pick up with one hand.  Ask the first child if they or the person beside them has more.  Whoever has more may move to the next activity.  Next ask a child who has less, themselves or the person beside them.  Whoever has less may go to the next activity.  If both children have an equal amount, they may both go.  Continue until everyone has moved to the next activity.

Mathematics/Number & Operations; begins to use language to compare numbers of objects with terms such as more, less, greater than, fewer, equal to.


About Kerry CI am an Early Childhood Educator who has seen daily the value of shared book readings with my preschoolers. I use the book theme in my centers and can daily touch upon a variety of Early Childhood Domains which makes assessing the children easy and individualized.