There’s so much delicious fun to serve up with Melissa & Doug’s selection of pretend play foods, it’s hard to know where to begin sometimes.
Luckily, we’ve got a helpful tip to get your kids cooking in the pretend kitchen—start with dessert! That’s why we’re shining this Toy Spotlight on our Scoop & Serve Ice Cream Counter, not only one of our top-reviewed pretend toys, but a curated “Melissa’s Pick” as well!
Pretend play is critical to child development, because it helps encourage the social-emotional steps necessary for kids to eventually work and play well with others in a school setting. Melissa & Doug’s array of pretend play toys is designed to engage, inspire, and encourage kids to play in open-ended, imaginative ways for hours, and the Scoop & Serve Ice Cream Counter does exactly that.
No need to keep you waiting any longer at the takeout window—without further ado, here’s the scoop on our Scoop & Serve Ice Cream Counter. Hit the Toy Spotlight!
Why Kids Will Love this Pretend Ice Cream Counter Play Set
Play Basics: Scoop up some cool treats with this all-inclusive, 28-piece pretend play ice cream counter!
Playful Details: The sturdy wooden tabletop counter holds eight wooden scoops of different-flavored ice cream, six assorted toppings, two cones, a plastic cup, an ice cream scooper, tongs, and a wooden spoon. Scoops of pretend ice cream can stack on the included cones or cup, and toppings fit snugly over scoops. The realistic-looking scooper fits into a hole on top of each of the scoops to lift, stack, and release. Take orders on the reusable menu card, pay with play money, and serve up scoops of pretend
ice cream fun!
Age: 3+ years
Who Will Love This: Kids who love pretend kitchen play, especially if they enjoy whipping up delectable desserts; kids who want to become chefs; kids who love ice cream!
Skills at Play: Gross and fine motor skills, C-grip development, imaginative play, creative expression, practical life skills (scooping, stacking, sorting), early math/money skills
Gift Tip: Hand a pretend cup or cone to the birthday kid when it’s dessert time at the party–it’s a fun way to prank the guest of honor while gifting them this pretend ice cream play set!
Countless Ways to Play: Here’s some inspiration on different ways for your child to play with the Scoop & Serve Ice Cream Counter!
COLD CASH There are six dollar bills included with the play set. Place an order (“A two-scoop cone with sprinkles, please!”) and have kids count out the number of bills needed to buy it. Ask kids to figure out if they have enough money to pay for different orders. For instance, can they get a single scoop cone, a double-scoop cup, and a triple-scoop cone? What about two scoops with a topping and three scoops with a topping?
DON'T LET IT MELT It's a hot summer day, and the ice cream is starting to melt! Luckily, folks are starting to line up at the ice cream counter. Set a timer for 60 seconds and start calling out orders. Have young ice cream servers use and reuse cones and cups to fill as many orders as they can before the timer goes off!
ON YOUR MARK, GET SET, STACK! Place four ice cream scoops in a line on the floor, and the other four in a line about 10 feet away. Have kids (one or two) choose a cone. When you say, "On your mark, get set, stack!" have kids choose a scoop and yell out the flavor as they stack it on their cone. Then, they have to race to the other line, choose a scoop, and yell out the flavor as they stack it on top of the first scoop. Repeat until all the scoops are on top of a cone! If a scoop falls off while running, the kids have to pick it up, run to the farthest line, and replace the scoop before continuing the race. With one player, use a timer to make the "race" more challenging; with two players, have them start on the same line and race each other.
Plays Well With: Start by pairing the Scoop & Serve Ice Cream Counter with the Chef Role Play Costume, because kids should look like pretend professionals in their pretend kitchens. Next, expand the dessert offerings by adding new items such as pretend cookies, pretend cupcakes, and diversified pretend frozen treats. Then, your kids will generate enough pretend revenue to invest in the Snacks and Sweets Food Cart to take their treats on the road. Finally, don’t forget to stock up on additional pretend capital with the Classic Play Money Set, as your ice cream entrepreneurs take over the world!
Toy Story: “Really great toy! Not cheap and flimsy. Well crafted, and beautifully made. So much imaginative fun! And math with the prices on the menu and the money. Role playing, decision making, and yummy enjoyment. Would highly recommend it for your little ones, and a solid gift. My son has really loved this for years now—I bought it after he has loved playing with it at the library for years.” —Rebecca T., in a recent 5-star Amazon review