The winter is a great time to talk about the temperature outside and inside, and the ways that we stay warm! Are there certain foods that children crave when they spend lots of time playing outdoors? Warm drinks are a great way to warm up our bodies after we spend time playing outdoors.

Set up Time: 7 minutes


  1. Collect the ingredients for making hot chocolate: hot cocoa mix, milk, salt, marshmallows, and sugar. We chose to serve ours in pretty tea cups, as children love an excuse to make things a little fancy!
  2. Next, cook cocoa as per the directions on the cocoa mix box. Or, alternatively check out the recipe below.
  3. When the cocoa is ready, invite children to add their marshmallows. See the drop down menu below to turn this into a math activity!

Hot Cocoa Recipe:
1/4 cup of cocoa powder
4 cups of milk
1/4 cup of sugar
A pinch of salt

Mix the ingredients in a pot and heat in on the stove until the milk starts to boil, then turn off the heat. We recommend using a whisk to make the cocoa smooth.


  • Cacao powder
  • Milk
  • Sugar
  • Salt
  • Optional: marshmallows

Learning Through Play

Cognitive: Memory – Having hot cocoa together is always lovely and memorable! Sensory experiences where children can bond and chat over a warm drink is one of the things that makes winter so magical! Invite children to reflect on the activities you did in the day and review them with parents as well, to invite children of all language levels to practice communicating what they enjoyed about the day.

Physical: Gross Motor – Be sure to pair this activity with some active play outdoors before or after the hot cocoa! It will make it taste even better, we promise! It’s important to get lots of outdoor exercise in the winter months and the children can replace the calories they have burned with the delicious hot cocoa.

School Readiness: Numeral Recognition – Do you have anything that represents numerals? If so, you can very simply turn this into a math lesson by inviting children to count out some marshmallows to correspond, then ask them how many they want in their cocoa!

See this activity in the Rayz Kidz app along with the other fun activities. Rayz Kidz is your trusted source for play-based activities featuring over 100 themes and 500+ hands-on activities and clear descriptions of the beautiful learning that is happening through play.