A gingerbread house is fun, but how about a cardboard box gingerbread house that you can decorate over and over?! This is a fantastic Christmas activity for preschoolers (and my 7 year old is enjoying it too)!
Build a Cardboard Gingerbread House
Rows of velcro on the house make it possible to stick and re-stick all kinds of festive decorations. We didn’t have a cardboard box quite the right size, so my husband cut pieces of cardboard to make the house.
The sides are each 6 inches by 6 inches.
The front and back are 6 inches wide and 9 inches at the peak of the roof.
The two roof pieces are 6 inches by 8 inches.
My husband cut out a base piece of cardboard that is 6 inches by 10 inches, which gives the gingerbread house a front porch. Then he hot glued all the walls together! The gingerbread house is quite sturdy.
We hot glued strips of velcro to the house. Be sure to use plenty of glue. The hot glue adheres well to the cardboard and the velcro, so you shouldn’t have trouble with it coming back off. We had to touch up a couple of spots where we hadn’t used enough glue in the first place.
I would recommend using the stiff side of the velcro on the house and the soft side on the accessories. That way, the accessories won’t stick to clothes, etc. and make pulls in sweaters and ruin things.
Jordan cut a door on the front of the house and added a couple of windows. SO CUTE!
Note: This activity is definitely for kids who are no longer putting things in their mouth. Always supervise this type of activity.
We bought all of the accessories at Hobby Lobby. I actually went to Michael’s first, but didn’t find much. Hobby Lobby had fun Christmas buttons and little Christmas lights! Pom pom balls also work great – they don’t stick very strongly to the velcro, but they do stick, and the velcro doesn’t ruin them either.
The little gingerbread men are buttons. They were with the Christmas crafts, though, and not with the buttons in the sewing section. So far, we have not had any trouble with the velcro coming off the buttons or the little lights. I think that the glue seeps into the button holes, which helps.
The big candy pieces on the top of the house were also from Hobby Lobby in the Christmas section. We tried hot glue first, and the velcro came right back off of them and took the glittery coating off with it. So then I tried Tacky Glue, which didn’t hold either, even after drying overnight. I ended up having to just permanently Tacky Glue them to the house, so those pieces can’t be rearranged. They still look cute!
Janie loves grouping the decorations by they type of item, as you can see!
So cozy, working on a gingerbread house by the Christmas tree!
We added some people to go with the house, and Janie had a great time putting them inside. Then she went looking for more toys to put inside until the house was stuffed!
Everyone in the family has taken a turn decorating the gingerbread house! It’s fun to see how everyone takes a different approach to decorating it. I think we’ll leave it out all month to play with!
Need more Christmas ideas?