Ice Cream Shop Dramatic Play Ideas That Are a Sweet Treat

I don’t know about you, but I never turn down a visit to the ice cream shop. Ice cream is my absolute favorite, and I definitely used my love of ice cream to create the perfect ice cream shop dramatic play set for your preschoolers. I included everything you need to make this dramatic play center a sweet treat. Well, minus the actual ice cream.

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Rainbow Lesson Plans

Rainbow lesson plans for preschool include rainbow book recommendations, rainbow literacy and math activities, rainbow art, and ice cream shop dramatic play.

Ice Cream Shop Dramatic Play

Ideas for Set-Up

The waft of sugar and sweet cream hits like a sugar rush as you enter the ice cream shop, building excitement for that sweet treat. 


And after extensive research (mmm, Coldstone), that sweet scent is the one thing I couldn’t recreate for your classroom setup. 


But I’ve got everything else covered for your ice cream shop dramatic play. From the ice cream bunting to the open and closed signs, the flavors to the order form, you’ll be able to set up a sweet dramatic play center for your preschoolers.


Dramatic Play signs

Pretend Ice Cream Shop

The solution to your problem is ice cream. In fact, the solution to every problem, including the number theory problems we got stuck on in college, was ice cream. At least, that’s what my friend Nicole said.


Any time all of those numbers and signs had us too confused to continue, we had to take an ice cream break. It was fundamentally necessary to the third power.


But you won’t have to worry about any confusing signs here. All of the signs in this ice cream shop dramatic play point to simple and fun. No number theory allowed.


We’ve got open and closed signs hung on a string for your little florists to turn, welcome signs to invite everyone in for a special treat, an ice cream bunting for the cuteness factor, and of course, the price list (one dollar per scoop)!


Ice Cream Shop


So, ice cream is my all-time favorite food. Seriously, why isn’t there a food group labeled ice cream? 


In fact, I requested ice cream for breakfast as my special “meal” for my fifteenth birthday, and my mom did not disappoint. A hot fudge sundae was glistening in the sun on the side table when I woke up. Thanks, Mom!

And just like I got my special request, the customers in your ice cream shop can ask for ice cream any way they like it. Bowl or cone, and any flavor combination and toppings they would like, this ice cream shop will make your ice cream dreams come true.


Ice Cream Shop

Ice Cream Toppings

Did you know there are zero calories in pretend toppings? It’s my ultimate dream.


That also means we can go to town on pretend toppings without future consequences. You (and your swimsuit) both know what I mean.


We’ve got gummy bears (teddy bear counters), marshmallows (white pompoms), bananas (fruit counters), chocolate chips, aand cherries (red pompoms).


Don’t forget the hot fudge, caramel, and whipped cream!


Ah, a girl can dream!


Ice Cream Shop


Do you all place bets with your spouses? Both my husband and I are super competitive, so when it comes to Yahtzee, Cornhole, dominoes, etc. we like to put a little wager on it. 


And when I was pregnant, all I wanted was to win the sweet bet of Cold Stone. That is, whoever lost had to go and pick it up (this was before Uber Eats, people).


And since all I do is win, win, win, my husband had my order memorized (cake batter ice cream with Reese’s and peanut butter, please). The taste of victory was so sweet. 


In the dramatic play center, all bets are off, and order forms do come in handy, especially for our preschoolers whose taste buds change daily. The order forms help the little customers choose their flavors, syrups, and toppings so that the servers can mix up a bowl of deliciousness.


Making the orders

Ice Cream Shop Dramatic Play

Being a server was the cherry on top of this dramatic play center. The kids loved taking orders, especially when they poured the secret toppings inside the ice cream cones. The things they think of.


Ice Cream Shop Dramatic Play

Check-Out Counter

Have any budding entrepreneurs in your classroom? I don’t know about you, but any time my girls come up with a crazy, creative idea, I’m like, “Go for it, girl!”


We’ve had Rainbow Loom bracelets, sock bean bags, snowcones made from actual snow, and the classic lemonade.


And now your little entrepreneurs can sell some ice cream! 


This is the perfect place for little ones to let their imaginations run wild and act like real ice cream shop owners. They can ring up their customers, count their change, and use the toy cash register. 


With endless possibilities, your child will have a blast playing and learning at the same time. So why wait? Bring your ice cream shop to life and watch their creativity soar!


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I can’t wait for you to create this sweet, authentic dramatic play center in your classroom. I know your little ones will squeal with delight when they realize they can order (and serve) ice cream with as many toppings as they would like!

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