Mama Mia!

I don't know about you, but I LOOOOVEEEE me some pizza.  There is nothing better than coming home on Friday after a long week at work and ordering a delicious, hot, cheesy pizza amirite?  Kids love pizza too.  Inspired by the book we were reading, The Little Red Hen (Makes a Pizza), and of course the pizza that our little cafeteria serves up for lunch each Friday, we decided to turn our dramatic play area into a Pizzeria. 

Being the crazy teacher lady that I am, nothing happens in dramatic play without some serious integration of literacy skills.  So we ate pizza, read pizza, wrote pizza and breathed pizza.  

We made mini pizzas with construction paper in the art center, and used them to decorate our bulletin board.  After doing lots of research, we had an introduction into the procedure (or how to) genre of writing.

Invented spelling gets me every.single.time.  So precious!  The kids came up with the steps, and I added the photographs as we went along so that my little ones can "read" our how to.

We added some of our favorite pizza based books so that we could refer to them while playing.  They think play, I think developing important pre-reading skills!

 Here the cashier is taking a customer's order on our customized order form.  The vocabulary they have developed so far astounds me!  Think of little ones, most of whom are English Language Learners, using words like pepperoni, chef, pizzeria and mozzarella!  I die!

 Here is a close up of one of our order forms.  There are three different versions (each increasingly harder than this one) to provide just the right level of challenge for your specific group.

Of course you need a pizza.  I love this Melissa and Doug version (like this one).  I got mine at Michael's with a 40% off coupon.

The kids were SO into the whole pizza theme that we even added The Little Red Hen (Makes a Pizza) props to our block area.  My coworker created these little icons with help from Making Learning Fun.  I just printed them and taped them onto blocks.  Easy peasy!

So are you sold yet?  You can snag everything you need to turn your classroom into a readers/writers/pizza lovers paradise right {here} in this 58 page unit.

Tons of stuff included in my Mama Mia! unit are not pictured above.  Let's break it down real quick:

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