If You Give a Mouse a Cookie {Book Activities}

If You Give a Mouse a Cookie by Laura Joffe Numeroff is a beloved childhood picture book that tells the tale of a young boy who finds out firsthand what happens when you give a mouse a cookie!

Children will delight (and most likely identify with) the antics of a mouse who keeps his young host very, very busy as he first asks for one thing and then the next.

If you give a mouse a cookie, he’s going to ask for a glass of milk.

When you give him the milk, he’ll probably ask you for a straw.

By the time the young boy has followed the mouse all over the house trying to meet his multitudinous needs (and cleaning up after him), he finds himself falling asleep in a chair — but alas, the mouse is thirsty.


he’ll ask for a glass of milk.

And chances are if he asks for a glass of milk, ….

This is a wonderful read aloud for non-readers who will simply enjoy the cadence and predictability of the story.  Beginning readers can probably read the story with a little help.  Slightly older students will still enjoy the book and can use it as a springboard to some of the more difficult suggestions below.

After spending years with this book in your house, you might find yourself saying, “if you give a mouse a cookie…” on many occasions to indicate … there WILL be non-ending repercussions!


These suggestions cover a wide range of ages.  As always pick and choose what will work best for your children.  You’ll find helpful resources below.

  • The pages are set up such that on several occasions you have to turn the page to read the end of a sentence explaining what happens next.  On those occasions, ask you child to tell you what he thinks will happen next before turning the page.
  • More kinesthetic children may enjoy acting the story out — just be sure they don’t do too much damage to their hair with the nail scissors!
  • Ask your child to narrate the story, or tell it back to you in his own words.  Older students can dictate their narrations to you to copy, or write them on their own.
  • Have your child illustrate his favorite scene.
  • Young writers can also copy the text from their favorite scene to add to their illustrations.
  • The entire book is a lesson in cause and effect.  Students can create a cause/effect sheet for each scene in the book.
  • Create your own scenes and let your child tell you what he thinks will happen.  For example, “If you give a mouse a piece of cheese, then….”
  • Create sequence strips for each scene.  Have your child put them in the correct order.
  • By giving the mouse a cookie, the boy started a chain reaction of events.  Set up dominoes to create a chain reaction like the one in this video (OK, maybe that would be a bit extravagant).  To make the demonstration even more like the book, have the domino chain end where it started.
  • Create a “give a mouse a cookie” storyboard or cartoon.
  • After the success of If You Give a Mouse a Cookie, the author came out with several other tales in the If You Give… series.  Older students can create a similar story of their own.
  • Add a page to your author’s notebook.
  • Add If You Give a Mouse a Cookie to your literature notebook.


Story Starters
Ideas from the author.

Story Circle
This download at ReadWriteThink.org makes sequencing easy.

Another great handout at ReadWriteThink.org that goes with the book.

Comic Strip Creator
Interactive at StoryboardThat.com that will help students create a storyboard or cartoon as suggested above.

The Great Cookie Chase
Printable game from the author’s site.

Mouse Mask
Common materials and easy to make.

Unit Studies & Lesson Plans

If You Give a Mouse a Cookie Teaching Guide
Four activities from the publisher’s site.

Lesson: Give a Mouse a Cookie
Great extension activities focusing on cause/effect from the University of Nebraska Omaha.

Circular Stories and Sequencing
Simple lesson plan at LessonPlansPage.com that has students create a graphic organizer and create their own circular story.

Teacher Resource Guide: Give a Mouse a Cookie
Goes with the Oregon Children’s Theatre production of the story, but works well on its own.  This 16-page download takes all types of tangents through circular stories, using scale, and chain reactions.

Study and Play Resource Guide
Works very well as a stand alone activity book.

Printables & Notebooking Pages

He’ll Draw a Picture
Illustration from the book that makes a nice printable with room for the student to add his own illustrations.

Print and Color the Mouse
Reproducible at Harper Collins.

Author Notebooking Pages

Author Notebooking Pages
Simple pages that include room for copywork, narrations, an illustration and dates of birth/death of the author, and books by the author.

Drawing & Writing Notebooking Paper {Free Download}
For narrations, copywork, and illustrating and describing your favorite scene from the book.

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