Showing posts with label Little House on the Prairie. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Little House on the Prairie. Show all posts

Feb 20, 2015

Farmer Boy Activities

My children and I took a little break from Laura Ingalls Wilder's Little House on the Prairie series last summer and fall, but as soon as we picked up Farmer Boy, I remembered why it's my favorite in the series. My children and I can really identify with Almanzo and the things he learns working on his father's farm.

Here are some activities I came up with to go along with our reading:

* Do a popcorn and milk experiment

* Try an ice insulation experiment.

* Dye some clothing or fabric using natural dyes. 

* Look at the cost of things in Farmer Boy. Can you compare them with prices today? How much would Almanzo's $200 be in today's money? 

* Eat some apples 'n onions.

* Grow a milk fed pumpkin.

* Make some apple turnovers.

* Do some molasses candy pulling.

* What could you enter into your area's fair? Start now on that project. 

* Set up a rain barrel.

* Make some simple headcheese.

* Make a whistle from a blade of grass. (Also.)

* Whip up some watermelon rind preserves.

* Tap some trees and make syrup. (More tips for tapping non-Maple trees here.)

* Eat some birds' nest pudding.

* Make some easy apple vinegar. (Instead of chopping up whole apples, you may use apple peels and scraps.)

* Color some boy farmer pictures.

* Make some watermelon rind pickles or green tomato pickles.

* Watch a video of the Wilder farm.

* Eat some blueberry pudding.

* Make some Farmer Boy inspired doughnuts.

* Read and learn about the Declaration of Independence.

*  Consider using this free Farmer Boy unit study, including crafts. (Here's another.)

* Make a Farmer Boy lap book. (Or, try this one.)

 More:

Little House in the Big Woods Activities
Pancake Men (from Little House in the Big Woods)
Little House on the Prairie Activities
Little House on the Prairie Birthday Party
On the Banks of Plum Creek Activities 
Little Town on the Prairie Activities
Activities for The First Four Years
These Happy Golden Years Activities 
Farmer Boy Activities


May 23, 2014

Activities for "The First Four Years"

Of all the Little House on the Prairie books, The First Four Years is the most mature. It's on the sad side of things, and leaves us wishing Laura had written more books about her life as an adult. Also, it has a different style than Laura's other books, at least in part because it's just a draft. Laura never attempted publication for The First Four Years. On the other hand, it's a very short book, and my children were especially delighted to hear about Laura becoming a mother.

It was much more difficult for me to come up with activities for this short book. Because of this, I do recommend browsing through the other Little House activities I've posted and following through with any of the "general pioneer" ideas you may not have already completed with your children. In addition, here are some other ideas:

* Make a lapbook for The First Four Years.

* Watch a video about making sausage. You can find some on YouTube. Better yet, try making some sausage yourself.

* Look at photos of headcheese. Go to an old fashioned butcher shop and buy some to eat. Headcheese used to be very common. Why do you think that was? Why do you think it's unusual now?

* Can you find lard in your local grocery store? (Hint: Try an ethnic market.)

* Watch a video of a live birth (if age appropriate).

* Ask your mother to tell you the story of your birth.

* The last chapter in The First Four Years is titled "A Year of Grace." Look up the definition of "grace." Why do you think Laura gave this chapter that title?

More:

Little House in the Big Woods Activities
Pancake Men (from Little House in the Big Woods)
Little House on the Prairie Activities
Little House on the Prairie Birthday Party
On the Banks of Plum Creek Activities 
Little Town on the Prairie Activities
These Happy Golden Years Activities 
Farmer Boy Activities

Apr 25, 2014

These Happy Golden Years Activities

My children (ages 8 and 5) are loving the Little House on the Prairie series by Laura Ingalls Wilder. I wasn't sure how they would react to These Happy Golden Years, which is mostly the story of how Almanzo courts Laura - but it ended up being one of their favorite books in the series. Here are some activities I came up with to go along with our reading:

* Google what "pie plant" is. (Answer: rhubarb!). Make a pie plant pie.

* Learn a little about the suffrage movement and how women won the right to vote.

* Learn about braille.

* Read "Gather Ye Rosebuds While Ye May" ("To the Virgins, to Make Much of Time" by Robert Herrick)

* Dabble a bit in music notation. You might play the free musical notes game here, or check out YouTube for some fun and educational videos. (Here's one example. Here's another.)

* Try singing in a round. In addition to "Three Blind Mice," "Row, Row, Row Your Boat" is a good choice for beginners. (Confused about what singing in a round is? Watch this video for examples.)

* Make popcorn balls.


* Learn about tornadoes.

* Make a tornado in a bottle.

* Review tornado safety.

* Look at a Dove in the Window quilt. Try making a Dove in the Window block; when finished, turn it into a doll quilt or a potholder.

* Think about the differences between Laura's courting and modern day dating. Compare and contrast.

* Check out real life photos of Laura, Almanzo, and their families.

* Interview your parents about how they met and became engaged.

* Look at a reproduction of what Laura's engagement ring might have looked like. (Scroll down.)

* Make a These Happy Golden Years lapbook.


More:

Little House in the Big Woods Activities
Pancake Men (from Little House in the Big Woods)
Little House on the Prairie Activities
Little House on the Prairie Birthday Party
On the Banks of Plum Creek Activities 
Little Town on the Prairie Activities
Farmer Boy Activities

Mar 17, 2014

Little Town on the Prarie Activities

Little Town on the Prairie is a lively book filled with tales of how pioneers entertained themselves - and how a 15 year old girl like Laura suddenly found herself becoming a grown woman, complete with a teacher's certificate and a beau. Of all the Little House books, it's the most like the television series. As you read this book with your kids, try a few of these great tie-in activities.

For more Little House activities, click here.

* Learn to identify common edible weeds, like sheep sorrel (For tips on foraging with kids, click here.)

* "Angleworms" are earthworms used for fishing (i.e. angling). Try calling worms up from any piece of earth in your yard. Then create your own wormery to study worms. Or make your own worm compost bin that will turn trash into great garden soil. Learn more about worms here, here, and here.
Learn to call worms, or make worm compost.

* Learn a bit about gophers here. Make some gopher paper bag puppets. (Okay, they are supposed to be ground hogs, but they look like gophers to me.) Or how about some groundhog - er gopher - cupcakes, like this or this (scroll down)?

* Learn about the life cycle of chickens. (This video is good for small children. This video has wonderful "inside the egg" photos. This website is also helpful.) Consider doing a chicken life cycle craft like this, too. While you're at it, be sure to notice that William's illustrations show chicks; does this match Laura Wilder's written description? Or should Williams have shown older chickens, known as "pullets?"

* Learn all the verses to the song "America."

* Learn about the Declaration of Independence.  

* Learn about the Constitution. Memorize the preamble to the Constitution (via Schoolhouse Rock).

* Look up needle grass.

1882 fashion plate.


* Look at some fashion plates from 1882.

* Try your hand at writing some funny poems or limmericks.

* Make your own name cards on the computer, or by hand. Do we still use name cards today? How have they changed?

* Create your own literary society. You could do this just with your family, or with like-minded friends.

* Play Charades, Blind Man's Bluff, and Drop the Handkerchief.

* Bake a huge pumpkin pie.

* Hold a family spelling bee.

* Do your own school exhibition. Have every child in the house memorize something and give a presentation to family and friends.

* Learn a little of the history of minstrel shows. Why are they now considered insulting? In Laura's day, why were they not? What appeal did they hold?

* Make your own autograph album. (You can also buy them cheaply here.)
 
Eat white cake and orange slices.

* Make a presidential time line. 

* Bake a white cake. Now eat it, alternating bites between an orange and the cake. How does the taste of the foods change when you eat them this way?

* Make a simple telegraph with an electromagnet.

* Watch "Electricity for Beginners" or "How Electricity Works."

* Learn what Braille is (and send away for a free Braille card.) Learn more here and here.

* If possible, visit a place with chickens. It could be a friend who has backyard chickens, or a farm.

* Make chicken pot pie.

* Make a Little Town on the Prairie lapbook.


 More:

Little House in the Big Woods Activities
Pancake Men (from Little House in the Big Woods)
Little House on the Prairie Activities
Little House on the Prairie Birthday Party
On the Banks of Plum Creek Activities 
Little Town on the Prairie Activities
Activities for The First Four Years 
These Happy Golden Years Activities 
Farmer Boy Activities

Jan 25, 2014

The Long Winter Activities

The Long Winter is the longest book in The Little House on the Prairie series, and as you read about the struggles of the Ingalls family, it's tough for a modern family to complain about modern life! As you read The Long Winter with your children, try some of these activities.

For more activities that go along with Little House on the Prairie books, click here.

* Make a button lamp.

* Make some hay sticks. (See also.)

* Cook up some ground cherry preserves.

* Prepare homemade cranberry sauce.

* Learn about little auks.
Little auks. (Courtesy Wikipedia Commons.)

* Whip up some baked beans.

* Make a green pumpkin pie.

* Make green tomato pickles.

* Learn about muskrat houses.

* Read and study the Declaration of Independence.

* Look up calorie recommendations for men, women, and children. Estimate how many calories the Ingalls were eating each day. What happens when we eat too little or too much?

19th century mowing machine. (Courtesy Wikipedia Commons.)
* If you have access to a hand-crank grain grinder (or an old fashioned coffee grinder that you're not worried about damaging) try grinding some wheat berries.

* Learn about 19th century mowing machines.

* Make ginger water (and read about the health benefits).

* Try some cambric tea.

* Learn about DeSmet (includes photos and videos).

* Look through a copy of Pa's "big green book" about animals.

* Do some "handiwork:" embroidery or other needlework, like Laura and Mary did to pass the time.

* Ask your children what would happen if a blizzard or other harsh weather/natural disaster cut you off from the rest of the world. What would you eat? How long would your supplies last? How does the U.S. government suggest families prepare for events like these?

* Remember what Pa said about "modern" conveniences? Ask your child what things we depend upon or want today that Pa might put into that category.

* Learn about frostbite and how to prevent and treat it.

* Find out who Tubal Cain was by reading Genesis 4:22. Also read Daniel 5: 17-24 to learn why Pa called Carrie "Nebuchadnezzar."

* Make a Long Winter lap book.

More:

Little House in the Big Woods Activities
Pancake Men (from Little House in the Big Woods)
Little House on the Prairie Activities
Little House on the Prairie Birthday Party
On the Banks of Plum Creek Activities 
Little Town on the Prairie Activities
Activities for The First Four Years
These Happy Golden Years Activities 
Farmer Boy Activities



Nov 11, 2013

By The Shores of Silver Lake Activities

By the Shores of Plum Creek is a little different from the earlier books in the Little House on the Prairie series by Laura Ingalls Wilder. There are fewer descriptions of everyday pioneer life - and, overall, the book is more "quiet" and contemplative. Still, my children loved it. Here are the activities I planned for use while reading the book.

* Make a By the Shores of Silver Lake lapbook.

* Check out a photo of the surveyor's house, plus a photo of a replica of their homestead house.

* Take a virtual tour of the prairie. Also Also watch a video about the surveyor's house.

* Learn: Did Mary really go blind from scarlet fever? No! Read more here.

Building the transcontinental railroad.
* Learn more about the transcontinental railroad (also here) - and read an eyewitness report of it's completion.

* Make a scrapbook, lapbook, or notebook about birds on the slough. List each birds on its own page, then draw a pictures of it; or print pictures from the Internet, cut, and paste them into the book. If you like, look each bird up in an encyclopedia to learn more about them. Good choices include: geese, ducks, herons, pelicans, cranes, mud hens, and swans.

A mud hen (a.k.a., American coot), via Wikipedia.
* Make your own sourdough starter and bread. Then make a simple yeast bread to compare taste and technique.

* While you're at it, learn a bit about the science behind sourdough!

* Cook some fried salt pork and gravy Or some bean soup, or baked beans.

* Plant a tree.

* Make a tree life cycle craft, like this one.

* Review what to do if your children get lost.

* Learn about buffalo (a.k.a. American bison).
American bison track (via Wikipedia).

* Watch a buffalo wallow.

* Make a paper horseshoe to hang over your door.

* Learn why horseshoes were considered lucky.


Check out the Entire Little House series of Posts:

Little House in the Big Woods Activities
Pancake Men (from Little House in the Big Woods)
Little House on the Prairie Activities
Little House on the Prairie Birthday Party
On the Banks of Plum Creek Activities 
Little Town on the Prairie Activities
Activities for The First Four Years
These Happy Golden Years Activities 
Farmer Boy Activities

Sep 11, 2013

On the Banks of Plum Creek Activities

As regular readers know, my children and I are working our way through Laura Ingalls Wilder's Little House on the Prairie series. Recently, we finished On the Banks of Plum Creek. And, if you know me, you know we had to some some activities to go along with the book. Here is a big list of ideas; try a few with your children!

* Create an On the Banks of Plum Creek lapbook from these free printables.

* Download and complete this simple, free On the Banks of Plum Creek book report sheet.

Build a sod house. (Just a mini one!)


* Plant some morning glories, black-eyed Susans, or blue flags. (They are very easy to grow!)
Morning glories.

* Learn a bit about badgers at the San Diego Zoo website.

* Check out free badger craft ideas, free printable coloring pages, and more.

* Learn about a butterfly's life cycle.

* Have fun with free butterfly coloring pages.

* Get up early to watch the sunrise.

* See an antique photo of some of the grasshoppers that plagued the prairie in the 1870s.

* Learn why grasshoppers swarm.

* Make horehound candy - or buy some!
Grasshoppers.

* Make a button necklace.

* Make star-edged shelf paper.

* Fry up some fish! (Clean and debone the fish, then dredge in cornmeal. Heat oil in a heavy pan, preferably cast iron; once it sizzles when you flick a drop of water on it, add the fish. Cook until golden on both sides.)

* Play "Ring Around the Rosie" or "Pussy wants aCorner" or "Uncle John" or "Cat's Cradle."

* Can you guess what a velocipede is? Check out some photos of old velocipedes.

* Make your own jumping jack toy. There are lots of instructions for these on the Internet, but start by looking at Handmade Charlotte, Spoonful,  and Bookzoompa.

* Whip up some lemonade. (Here's my favorite lemonade recipe.)


* Throw a simple town or country party.

* Make vanity cakes.

* Make popcorn balls.

* Make a nine patch quilt - use the nine patch pattern to make a pillow or pot holder. Or use the more difficult bear track pattern, instead.

* Learn about ball lightening - the "balls of fire" that Ma battled. (Be sure to check out this video of real ball lightening.)

Check out the Entire Little House series of Posts:

Little House in the Big Woods Activities
Pancake Men (from Little House in the Big Woods)
Little House on the Prairie Activities
Little House on the Prairie Birthday Party
On the Banks of Plum Creek Activities 
Little Town on the Prairie Activities
Activities for The First Four Years
These Happy Golden Years Activities 
Farmer Boy Activities



Aug 19, 2013

A Little House on the Prairie Birthday Party

I was pretty excited when my daughter chose a Little House on the Prairie theme for her birthday party - excited partly because I love 19th century history...and partly because I saw it as a chance to pull together a fun party without a lot of expense or fuss. In the end, I think everyone had a great time, and the party came together quite easily.

The Invitation
I always send out digital invitations - but I do them in the form of a .JPG that I create on my computer, using free photo editing software. This year was especially easy; I found a black and white drawing from one of the Little House books and added some text:
"It's [name here]'s birthday! Please come to our Little House on the Prairie party - dressed in your favorite frontier costume. Join our 'half pint' for old-fashioned games, yummy food, and fun!"
I also let everyone know costumes weren't mandatory - just encouraged - and gave some ideas I knew might be easily accomplished with dress up or everyday clothes: Cowboy, Indian, railroad engineer, frontiersman, or pioneer, for example.


The Decorations
I wanted to keep this very simple, using things we already had on hand:

* A well worn (not historic or valuable) quilt as a tablecloth
* A basket of apples and a bowl of cherries (used later for games)
* A bucket lined with calico for utensils
* Old canning jars for straws and simple bouquets of flowers from our yard
* A Lincoln Log-built cabin
* Some sepia photos we had of our family in 19th century costumes
* An authentic old school slate with my daughter's age written on it (I later photographed her in costume, holding the slate.)

Although it didn't really fit in with the theme, we also put up a few balloons - because in our family, you can't have a birthday party without them!

I also considered using hay bales for outdoor seating; they are inexpensive (about $3 a piece around these parts) and I would use them later for chicken bedding - but we have too many people with allergies, an important consideration if you are thinking about using hay or straw bales.

The Food
I considered serving pioneer-inspired food but decided we had too many picky eaters. Instead, we stuck with easy picnic fare like hot dogs and burgers - and lemonade served in canning jars. I also considered making popcorn balls as party favors, but ran out of time to do this. At one point, I thought we'd make ice cream with an old fashioned, hand cranked ice cream maker. This would have been a nice addition, but I couldn't find a cranked ice cream maker to borrow.

We considered many ideas for the birthday cake - some pretty elaborate, with covered wagons or log
cabins on top. But in the end, my daughter decided she wanted a simple cake - something like Laura Ingalls might have had if Pa and Ma could have splurged on a cake. So I made a chocolate cake with white cream cheese frosting - two round layers. On the day of the party, I plucked some edible flowers from our yard (bachelor buttons and pansies) and used them to decorate the cake.

The Games
I had a lot of fun choosing old fashioned games for the party - and I think both the adults and kids enjoyed them. We played:

* Musical chairs, using music from Pa's Fiddle - a collection of music Pa played in the Little House books. (I downloaded a single song for a mere .99 cents...all I needed for our game.)

* Potato sack race - so fun, we did it a couple of times. You can find burlap sacks all over the Internet, but I was afraid some of the cheaper ones would rip. (We had older children - and some adults - using them in the game.) Even so, I bought them inexpensively - four for $3.55. They worked perfectly and I will keep them for future parties.

* Watermelon eating contest - I placed a cheap plastic party tablecloth on the picnic bench and gave each child 1/4 of a watermelon. Then we did an adult version, too.

* Cherry pit spitting contest. (If you can find a watermelon with plenty of seeds in it - difficult to do these days - you can use those instead of cherry pits.) I laid another cheap plastic tablecloth on the ground. (If adults will be playing, too, I recommend at least two tablecloths or a plastic aisle runner.) Each child ate a cherry, reserving the pit. Then, one at a time, she tried to spit it as far as she could. With a felt tip pen, I circled each child's pit and wrote her initials beside it, so there'd be no question about whose was whose. The child who spit a pit the farthest won. The kids liked this game so much, they played it many times.

* Apple bobbing. The trickiest part of this was finding smallish apples with stems; the ones I found were rather large, which made the game harder. (My daughter is also missing three front teeth, so it was especially difficult for her - but she did manage to get an apple.) I didn't have a half wine barrel, trough, or shallow, wide bucket, so I used the pot of my pressure canner. It was a bit deep, but that just meant the kids got a little more wet!

To view my Pinterest inspiration board for this party - and discover lots of great ideas I didn't use - click here. 

Check out the Entire Little House series of Posts:

Little House in the Big Woods Activities
Pancake Men (from Little House in the Big Woods)
Little House on the Prairie Activities
Little House on the Prairie Birthday Party
On the Banks of Plum Creek Activities 
Little Town on the Prairie Activities
Activities for The First Four Years
These Happy Golden Years Activities 
Farmer Boy Activities


Jul 15, 2013

Little House on the Prairie Activities

This summer, my children and I are reading Laura Ingalls Wilder's Little House books. They are not only entertaining, but quite educational, too. Here are some of the activities I planned to go along with Little House on the Prairie. (For activities for Little House in the Big Woods, click here.)

* Make a lapbook (or a book from stapled pieces of paper). You'll find some free printables for making a Little House on the Prairie lapbook here.

* Make a covered wagon. (Free wagon printable here or craft idea here. If you're feeling more adventuresome, try this playhouse style wagon.)

Little House on the Prairie offers an excellent opportunity to learn about cowboys and Indians (indigenous people of North America):

* Print out and use free cowboy lapbook printables.

* Make a horse from a cardboard box.

* Make a stick horse. (Here's one made from a sock.)

* Create a foot print horse painting.

* Make a paper cowboy hat.

* Throw an Indian party for your kids. Eat traditional Native American food, play Indian games, learn a little indigenous sign language...


* Make an Indian headdress. Simply cut a piece of cardstock or construction paper into a rectangle long enough to fit around your child's head; staple or glue in place. Use craft feathers, or "feathers" made from colorful cardstock, to decorate the headdress.

* Cook up some easy Native American food, like fry bread and hominy.

* Play Native American dice or other Indian games, found here and here.

* Make a paper totem pole.

* Make a paper tepee.

* Learn about writing symbols the indigenous people used. And while you're at it, learn some Indian sign language.

* Make a tiny bow and "arrow."

* Learn about various tribes and do lots of fun activities in History Pockets Native Americans. (I highly recommend it!)

Check out the Entire Little House series of Posts:

Little House in the Big Woods Activities
Pancake Men (from Little House in the Big Woods)
Little House on the Prairie Activities
Little House on the Prairie Birthday Party
On the Banks of Plum Creek Activities 
Little Town on the Prairie Activities
Activities for The First Four Years
These Happy Golden Years Activities 
Farmer Boy Activities


May 6, 2013

Little House in the Big Woods Activities

As I mentioned last week, my children and I are reading Laura Ingalls Wilder's Little House in the Big Woods. Not only is it a fun, entertaining read, but it's educational, too. Before we began the book, I made a list of potential activities. We didn't do them all, but you might enjoy doing some of all of these activities with your children. Have fun!

* Study animal tracks. I found a great little freebie about wildlife tracks in Wisconsin (the location of the action in The Little House in the Big Woods). My daughter colored and cut and paste this printable into her own little guide of the tracks Laura and Pa might have seen in the Big Woods. I also Googled "wildlife tracks" and "animal tracks" and the name of my state and found a free printable of local wildlife tracks. I whited out the names of the animals on one copy (and kept an in-tact copy as reference for myself) and my children tried to guess what animal made each type of print. Next time we go camping, they can't wait to see what animal tracks they can find.

* Sew a simple 9 patch quilt, like Laura's. For less experienced sewers, I'd make a single block and turn it into a potholder or a dollhouse quilt.


* Make a clove apple, like Ma's. Buy lots of cloves, then stick the pointed end into the apple. If you like, wrap a ribbon around the finished apple, so it can be hung. (Having a hard time picturing what this looks like? Look here.)

* Whip up some hasty pudding, like Grandma made.

* Make maple candy. This is easiest if you have fresh snow, but crushed ice works, too. Find instructions here.

* Go maple surgaring. If you're lucky enough to have sugar maple trees and the time of year is right.

* Make pancake men.

* Make butter. No, it's probably not practical to churn it like Ma and Mary, but you can easily make it in a jar

* Make a corncob doll, like Laura had before she got Charlotte for Christmas.

* Listen to the songs on YouTube. Pa played lots of wonderful music, much of which you can find on YouTube. Look first for the song title plus "fiddle."

* Make a book of Big Woods animals. Look up the animals mentioned in the book. Print out pictures or have your child draw them.

* Make a needlebook, like Ma made as a gift. If your children sew or do any type of needlework, this is a simple project that is very useful. There are tons of tutorials online, but this one by Simple Homemade, this one by Acire Adventures, and this one by Johey are some of my favorites.

* Play this free Big Woods board game.

* Learn new words. Whenever you read aloud to children, stop and explain words you think they don't know. I usually ask, "What does that word mean?" Sometimes the children surprise me and actually know! For my 7 year old, I took this a step further and had her write down unfamiliar words, look them up in the dictionary, and then draw a picture of them.

* Make a book of your own. I don't like lapbooks, but my daughter often enjoys making books from paper stapled together. For Big Woods, her book included pages with her drawings of characters in the book, a little of her own writing, and free printables we found online here and here and here.

Check out the Entire Little House series of Posts:
Little House in the Big Woods Activities
Pancake Men (from Little House in the Big Woods)
Little House on the Prairie Activities
Little House on the Prairie Birthday Party
On the Banks of Plum Creek Activities 
Little Town on the Prairie Activities
Activities for The First Four Years
These Happy Golden Years Activities 
Farmer Boy Activities


  


Apr 26, 2013

Pancake Men (from Little House in the Big Woods)

My children (4 and 7) and I are currently reading Laura Ingalls Wilder's Little House in the Big Woods. If you're unfamiliar with the original Little House books, I can't recommend them enough. Both my children are enthralled, and I love them, too. As we read, we are doing little projects that go with the story - so when we read about Ma's pancake men, my children cried, "Please? Let's make some!" How could I say no? But even if you're not reading Little House in the Big Woods, this is a fun project to do with your kids. Here's how Wilder describes them:
"For breakfast there were pancakes, and Ma made a pancake man for each one of the children. Ma called each one in turn to bring her plate, and each could stand by the stove and watch, while with the spoonful of batter Ma put on the arms and the legs and the head. It was exciting to watch her turn the whole little man over, quickly and carefully, on a hot griddle."

To begin, make your favorite pancake batter. (I use this recipe.) Warm a skillet or griddle, greasing it first - just as with normal pancakes. Now pour the batter, making a fat little body first, then adding a head and limbs. Ma used a spoon to do this and so did I, but I will warn you to have a sense of humor about your little men. Some will look pretty silly. Some may not look like people at all. But that's all part of the fun; my kids have never laughed so much at the breakfast table.

If you have an old, clean squeeze bottle (that originally held, say, mustard or catsup), you can place the batter in that and probably have better control over your creation - be it a man, an animal, or some other object. But we wanted to do it just like Ma. It was a morning my kids won't soon forget!

Check out the Entire Little House series of Posts:

Little House in the Big Woods Activities
Pancake Men (from Little House in the Big Woods)
Little House on the Prairie Activities
Little House on the Prairie Birthday Party
On the Banks of Plum Creek Activities 
Little Town on the Prairie Activities
Activities for The First Four Years
These Happy Golden Years Activities 
Farmer Boy Activities