Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Spooky Spider Cookies

If you are looking for something fun and simple to make with your kids this Halloween week, I've got a tasty treat that takes no time at all. We actually made these back at the end of September. The idea came from a class that Jacob took last fall at a local nature center the week they studied spiders. (Forgive the ill-lighted photos -- it was an overcast, rainy, PJ day.)  Here is my version of these arachnid-shaped snacks.

Chocolate Spider Cookies

You will need:
  • chocolate sandwich cookies (we prefer Trader Joe's version)
  • pretzel sticks (also good for spreading)
  • mini M&M's (the regular ones work OK in a pinch)
  • something sticky (we used Nutella, but peanut butter works fine)

This is a very hands-off project for the adults, so just set out the supplies, make an example, and let the kids go to work!
To assemble, just open up your sandwich cookies, like so....

Arrange the pretzels in the icing so they form eight spider legs. You might want to break the sticks in half. (This moment affords an excellent opportunity to discuss the difference between how many legs spiders have versus insects. Numbers! Science! Comparison! Counting! We are "learnding."

Next, put the cookie back together (You may need some extra "glue" here to hold it together, so spread on some extra Nutella. Because you can.).

Using a pretzel stick, dab on two dots of Nutella and add the mini M&M's as eyes. That's it!

Here comes the best part...the eating! (They look so tired in this photo, but really, they were excited!)

We finished off the theme by singing "The Itsy-Bitsy Spider" and reading Eric Carle's The Very Busy Spider before taking naps. We may make these again this week, and if so, I hope to include a reading of Mary Howitt's poem, "The Spider and the Fly," which, though morbid, could make for an interesting inclusion in the cookie. Maybe the spider could swallow up a regular-sized M&M for the "fly"?! However you make these and whatever you do, please enjoy!

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