Math at Home Math Access for Teachers
and Home Child Care Providers

CME Group Community Foundation

 

 

Hot Cocoa Math

Children will count the marshmallows in their hot chocolate and write the number on their mug.

  

 
Content Area Standard Target
  • Number and Operations
  • Data Analysis and Probability
  • Understand numbers, ways of representing numbers, relationships among numbers, and number systems
  • Compute fluently and make reasonable estimates
  • Formulate questions that can be addressed with data and collect, organize, and display relevant data to answer them
  • Develop and evaluate inferences and predictions that are based on data
  • Count with understanding and recognize “how many” in sets of objects
  • Use multiple models to develop initial understandings of place value and the base-ten system
  • Develop a sense of whole numbers and represent and use them in flexible ways, including relating, composing, and decomposing numbers
  • Develop fluency with basic number combinations for addition and subtraction
  • Pose questions and gather data about themselves and their surroundings
  • Represent data using concrete objects, pictures, and graphs
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Obtain materials Obtain the Materials
 
  • A bag of small marshmallows
  • Laminated drawing of a mug and ten frame (You can also slip the mat into a plastic protective sleeve) The children can draw on the laminated drawing with crayons or dry erase markers.
  • Hot chocolate
  • The book, Lucky Pennies and Hot Chocolate by Carol Diggory Shields.

Note: Small parts create a choking hazard for children. Make sure that all materials you choose to use for an activity or lesson with children meet safety requirements. Small parts are not appropriate for children who are 5 years of age or younger.

   
Introduce the activity Introduce the Activity
 
  1. Ask  the children about their experiences with hot chocolate.  “Does everyone like hot chocolate?”, “Do you like marshmallows in your hot chocolate?”
  2. Explain that today, everyone is going to have the opportunity to enjoy some delicious hot chocolate. 
   
Engage the children Engage the Children
 
  • Begin by giving each child a laminated drawing with a number on the mug.  I like to start with a number less than 10 as a review.  The children then pick the appropriate amount of marshmallows and place them in the 10 frame to show the number on the mug.
  • Continue with a number from 11-20.  Write the number on the mug (this is where the laminated mug drawings come in handy!). The children then pick the appropriate amount of marshmallows and place them in the 10 frames to show the number on the mug.
  • Next, give the children a set amount of marshmallows, (11 – 20), have them place them in the 10 frames and then write the number of marshmallows on the mug.
  • After the activity with the marshmallows, enjoy some hot chocolate. Graph the opinions as to whether the children like the hot chocolate or not.  Also graph whether the children like marshmallows in their hot chocolate or not.
  • As the children are enjoying their hot chocolate, read the book, Lucky Pennies and Hot Chocolate.

Additional Extensions

  • Add more 10 frames to the cocoa mat and have the children work with bigger numbers.
  • Pose informational questions about the hot chocolate. Collect data and record using graphs.
   
Encourage vocabulary Encourage Vocabulary
 
  • Digit – A symbol used to show a number (e.g., "8 is a one-digit number.  12 is a two-digit number.")
  • Place value – The value of a digit depending on its place in a number

Glossary of MATH vocabulary

   
Make adaptations Make Adaptations
 

Supporting Children at Different Levels

Toddlers   Pre-K

Toddlers may:

  • Still work only with numbers 1-10.

Vertical line

Pre-K Children may:

  • Easily work with numbers 1 thru 10.

Home child care providers may:

  • Only have the children work with 10 marshmallows and a cup (mat) that has 1 ten frame.
  • Work in fives.  Reinforce 1 line in the 10 frame.  2 fives make 10.
  • Count, recognize, represent, name and order marshmallows 1 thru 10.

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Home child care providers may:

  • Add more 10 frames to the cocoa mat and have the children work with bigger numbers.
  • Pose informational questions about the hot chocolate. Collect data and record using graphs.

 

   
Books Books
 
  • Lucky Pennies and Hot Chocolate by Carol Diggory Shields (Boston, MA: Dutton Juvenile, 2000)
   
Music and movement Music and Movement
 
   
Outdoor connections Outdoor Connections
 
  • Using brown paper lunch bags, have the children collect items in 10s.  Use one bag to collect 10 rocks, use another bag to collect 10 leaves etc. Once each bag has 10 items, close up the bag.  When the children are finished collecting, have them count (by 10s) the number of collected items in the total number of bags.  Be sure to emphasize, “0ne bag has 10 items so we will be counting by 10s to find out how many collected items we have in total.”

  • If there is snow on the ground, go outside and play in the snow before coming inside to enjoy the hot cocoa.

   
Explore links Web Resources
 
  • These free online counting games will help to develop early number skills. There are lots of different games to practice different skills, such as putting the right number of cherries on the gingerbread men, counting the spots on a ladybird and putting numbers in the correct order.
    http://www.maths-games.org/counting-games.html
  • Enjoy kids counting games online and help improve your math skills. Perfect for students in early grades of school, these interactive games and activities offer fun challenges that kids will love. Use your counting skills to catch numbers, protect towers, count blocks, solve puzzles, play strategy games, and more. These free games are excellent teaching resources that will help make learning math fun at home
    http://www.kidsmathgamesonline.com/counting.html

 


 

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