Holiday Cookie Math November 06, 2017 14:36

Now that holiday cookieswe're moving into November, it's time to bring out the holiday recipes and work a little math magic. 

Here are some fun cookies in various holiday shapes that your students can decorate while doing some holiday math.

For the Santas, you can use any sugar cookie recipe you have on hand. Make the cookies into round shapes and bake.

(Slice and bake refrigerator cookies work well, too.) You can also download a sugar cookie recipe here.
Hanukkah cookies
Let the cookies cool, then frost half of each cookie with red frosting and the other half with white. Add coconut to cover the white frosting, if you wish.

Use chocolate chips for eyes, placed just at the top of  the white frosting. Add a red cinnamon candy for a small mouth in the middle of the coconut. A mini marshmallow becomes the pom-pom on Santa's hat.

You can also decorate the round cookies as harvest pumpkins or holiday ornaments. 

holiday sugar cookie recipeSquare and diamond shapes can become dreidels for Hannukah (this year Hannukah begins on December 12) or Kwanzaa flags or gifts.

Give each of your students a cookie and let the students decorate the cookies with frosting.

Then they can add chocolate chips, mini marshmallows, cinnamon candies, small gumdrops and other colorful decorations. 


While your students decorate the cookies, give them the following word problem to solve:
Sandi is decorating gingerbread boy cookies. For each cookie she uses two chocolate chips for eyes, one cinnamon candy for a mouth, and three small gumdrops for buttons. If Sandi makes 2 dozen cookies, how many gumdrops will she need? (72) How many chocolate chips? (48) How many cinnamon candies? (24)

delicious cookies

Have volunteers show their solutions on the board. Talk about various ways to solve the problems.

They could solve for cinnamon candies first, since that's the smallest number and then multiply that number by 2 for chocolate chips and by 3 for gumdrops. 

Or, once they have the number of chocolate chips and cinnamon candies needed, they could simply add those two numbers together to find the total number of gumdrops needed.

Make sure no students have allergies to any ingredients. 
Provide plastic snack bags if your students will take their cookies home.

Or provide napkins and water if they will eat the cookies in class. (Make sure no one is allergic to the ingredients.)

holiday piesAfter the students calculate the cost to make the recipe, ask them to find the unit cost. 

If you have the time and equipment available, let your students make a variety of cookies or pies to share with a local senior center, soup kitchen or homeless shelter.

Bring in one of your favorite holiday recipes (or use this sugar cookie recipe) and have your students double or triple it. Then have them create a shopping list and price each ingredient.

For example, if the ingredients for 4 dozen cookies cost $9.50, what would be the cost per cookie? (40¢)

If the students hold a bake sale and sell all 4 dozen cookies, what will they need to charge per cookie to make a profit of $10.00? What will they need to charge per dozen cookies? Could they make 8 dozen cookies with the ingredients they purchased?

What would be the cost per cookie if they make 8 dozen cookies? (20¢) What would they need to charge per cookie to make $10.00 in profit?


Excel Math is designed to combine math worksheets with hands-on activities and active learning. Our unique spiraling process helps students retain the math concepts for the long term.

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