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Gingerbread
The Runaway Gingerbread Cookie Mystery



The Runaway Gingerbread Cookie Mystery
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 3 to 4
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   3.83

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    briggs, custodian, red-haired, roberts, shriek, counselor, clearly, fine, sheets, group, lined, missing, exactly, minutes, stayed, carton
     content words:    Gingerbread Girl


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The Runaway Gingerbread Cookie Mystery
By Joyce Furstenau
  

1     One fine school day a group of first graders baked a batch of gingerbread cookies to share. Each of them received a fist-sized ball of gingerbread. They rolled it. They patted it. They rolled it again. When it was just the right size, each of them took turns using the gingerbread cookie cutters. Their teacher, Mrs. Briggs, helped each of them place their gingerbread child on a cookie sheet. She carefully brought the sheets to the school kitchen. The head cook placed each sheet in the oven for exactly eight minutes. When the cookies were done, Mrs. Briggs brought them back to class. The students would frost them after recess.
 
2     The children went outside while their cookies cooled, and Mrs. Briggs went to the teacher's lounge for a cup of coffee. When the bell rang, the children lined up outside the door and waited eagerly for their teacher. Everyone was anxious to frost his or her gingerbread cookie. The children took their seats, and Mrs. Briggs started to pass out the cookies. The class heard a loud shriek. The children were startled.
 
3     "One of our gingerbread children is missing!" exclaimed Mrs. Briggs. "They were all there when I left the room. What do you think happened to it?" she asked the class.
 
4     The children jumped out of their seats and crowded around the trays of cookies to see which one was missing. Each child looked for his or her own cookie.
 
5     "If you see your cookie, please raise your hand," instructed Mrs. Briggs. One by one, each child raised a hand when they spotted their cookie. No one reported missing his or her cookie, yet there was clearly an empty space. Mrs. Briggs was certain the tray was full when she brought them back from the kitchen. Finally, one boy confessed that he had made two cookies -- a boy and a girl. He had made an extra one for his sister.
 
6     "What do you think happened to that extra cookie?" Mrs. Briggs asked the class.
 
7     "Let's form a search party," said one student.
 
8     "Let's make posters," suggested another.

Paragraphs 9 to 18:
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