After mixing of concrete, the hardening starts by an exothermic chemical reaction known as hydration. As the reaction rate depends on the temperature the time in the description of the hydration is replaced by the maturity which is defined as an integral over a certain function depending on the temperature. The temperature distribution is governed by the heat equation with a right hand side depending on the maturity and the temperature itself. We compare of the performance of different time integration schemes of higher order with an automatic time step control. The simulation of the heat distribution is of importance as the development of mechanical properties is driven by the hydration. During this process it is possible that the tensile stresses exceed the tensile strength and cracks occur. The goal is to produce cheap concrete without cracks. Simple crack-criterions use only temperature differences, more involved ones are based on thermal stresses. If the criterion predicts cracks some changes in the input data are needed. This can be interpreted as optimization. The final goal will be to adopt model based optimization (in contrast to simulation based optimization) to the problem of the hydration of young concrete and the avoidance of cracks. The first step is the simulation of the hydration, which we focus in this paper.