Hot Cocoa, or Hot Chocolate?

by Laura Overdeck

Now that the winter holidays have started, let’s talk about our favorite warm drink: hot chocolate. Or is it hot cocoa? Are they the same thing? No, they are very different drinks. Hot cocoa uses cocoa powder and sugar, like in the packets from the store. But to make hot chocolate, you melt chopped-up pieces of chocolate bar. The rich cocoa butter makes a thicker, smoother drink. That’s how the Maya in Central America made their chocolate drinks over 2,000 years ago! They drank their chocolate cold, though, probably because it was hot where they lived. But now that we have melty marshmallows, too, we like to heat things up.

Wee ones: A mini-marshmallow can fit on the tip of your finger. Find 2 things in your room that are also small enough to fit on your fingertip.

Little kids: If you have 9 marshmallows floating in your cocoa and you slurp up 1, how many are left floating around?  Bonus: How many more do you need to slurp up to leave a total of 4?

Big kids: If you pour 20 cups of hot chocolate and toss marshmallows in every other one starting with the 2nd, how many cups get marshmallows?  Bonus: If you now toss marshmallows in every 5th cup starting with the 5th, how many NEW cups get marshmallows?












Wee ones: Items might include buttons, small pieces of Lego, or pebbles.

Little kids: 8 mini-marshmallows.  Bonus: 4 more, since you need to get from 8 down to 4.

Big kids: 10 cups.  Bonus: Only 2 news cups, the 5th and 15th. The 10th and 20th already have marshmallows.

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