Beat the Heat with a Homemade Snow Cone Stand for Preschoolers

Beat the Heat with a Homemade Snow Cone Stand for Preschoolers

As the scorching summer heat rolls in, I find myself on a mission to keep my little ones entertained while also helping them stay cool. Especially after we had so much fun with our lemonade stand last week, I knew I had to keep the fun times going! That's when it hit me: snow cones!

And trust me, after testing this out with my in-home preschool learners, this is an activity I know your kids will love! In this blog post, I'll guide you through the step-by-step process of setting up your own snow cone pretend play center!

Snow Cone Dramatic Play- Child making a snow cone


Step 1: Gather Your Supplies

You can choose to use real items or pretend play items. Since I wanted to beat the heat, I decided to use real world items!

  • Shaved ice: you can do this by using a blender to shave the ice.
  • Snow Cone Flavors: I used food coloring, sugar and water and added them to a squeeze bottle. You can also add flavoring (like MiO flavoring) to these bottles to make it taste even better!
  • Squeeze bottles
  • Spoons
  • Bowls
  • Cups
  • Snow cone cups
  • Straws
  • Scoops
  • Sensory bins/ market stand, tables, use whatever you have for your dramatic play space.
Shaved Ice Sensory Bin preschool activity
Snow Cone Flavor For kids
Pretend Play Set Up Snow Cone


Step 2: Set Up

I would highly recommend bring this dramatic play center outside because it will get messy! Especially if you use food coloring - RIP my sensory table - it has been stained with love after one of my kids squeezed an entire bottle all over!

To set up my snow cone stand I brought out my market stand, sensory table and a couple small tables. Don't have any of these items? Thats ok, use whatever you have one hand!

I always think that pictures speak louder than words so here are photos of how I set up my snow cone stand area with signs, banners, etc.

Market Stand Dramatic Play Labels
Snow Cone Banner
Snow Cone Dramatic play ice sensory table


Step 3: Create Snow Cone Recipes

This snow cone set already includes pre made recipe cards, but I wanted the kids to get more involved in their snow cone making process. So what better way then to have them create their own recipes!

Snow cone recipe for kids

I printed a bunch of these craft pages and sat each child down to take turns creating their own recipes!

This was by far one of my favorite parts of this activity because it was time for me to connect with my preschoolers and learn more about what flavors they love and more about their favorite things!

Snow Cone Recipe Coloring page


Step 4: Time to Play

Now, it's the moment your little one has been waiting for—time to make snow cones! Encourage your kids to take turns being the customer, the cashier, and making snow cones. They can follow the recipes to create delicious snow cones, take orders from their "customers," count money, and taste their yummy creations!

Snow Cone dramatic play child taking order
Making a snow cone preschool

Even though we pretty much just squeezed sugar water onto shaved ice, the kids LOVED it! I did not limit the amount they ate because I only added a small amount of sugar to each bottle so they were actually eating 90% ice.

Snow Cone Dramatic play

And guess what? They didn't care at all! I'm pretty sure they were so excited to simply make the snow cones that the taste was secondary but of course you can add in whatever flavors your littles would love!

Preschooler making snow cones


Your Turn! 

Have I convinced you yet that you need to set up a snow cone stand this summer? If so let me help you set up your very own dramatic play center in your home or classroom!

I wish I could come over and do the heavy lifting, but I can do the next best thing and send you the printables! You can find all the printable signs, recipes, and banners here:

Snow Cone Dramatic Play Center Preschool Printables

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