"Many cultures around the world stop for tea. It is a time to slow down, talk with one another, and renew the spirit. For children it can be a time to teach life skills, manners and socialization."
"There is such pride for children to get to host a guest, serve food that they have prepared and then be trusted to carry the beautiful, fragile teacup. Shared social experiences follow. Children learn to chat and make polite conversation. They feel the empowerment of saying, please, thank you and may I get you some more? The children feel affirmed!"
- Spring Tea: a celebration of grace and courtesy for children three to six by Linda Seeley, Alison Ney, and Cameron Sesto (all Montessori teachers).
Making tea and hosting a tea party is one of the most wonderful practical life, grace and courtesy lessons. Many schools host a Spring Tea event and this is a lovely tradition we can adapt to the home environment. A tea party can be held at school, when friends come over, with siblings or with the child and a parent, at any time of the year! Otto (3yrs) was thrilled when I suggested the idea and he loved the whole experience.
For our tea party we've used:
- a pitcher of hot water - the water is hot from the tap but by the time it gets on the tray it's really warm, not so hot to burn if spilled. If the water is super hot you may also need a mitt or a cloth for the child to use on the tea pot when pouring.
- tea pot - ours has a diffuser. I like this one as it's clear and easy for the child to see the tea being infused, and see the tea as it's being poured.
- tea - we are using a children's loose leaf spearmint, calendula & chamomile tea.
- a timer - for the child to time and wait for the steeping time.
- a cleaning cloth - for any spills.
- tea cups - we use real tea cups so child knows this is a special event and knows to handle them carefully. We don't use our best cups, these are from Daiso so we don't stress if they get broken.
- biscuits - perfect for a tea party.
First the child (Otto is using mini tongs) puts the tea into the diffuser. I've pre-measured the tea so the child can put all of it in the diffuser.
Then pours the hot water into the diffuser part of the tea pot.
Otto loves all of this pouring!
We put the lid on the tea pot to keep in the aroma. Then flip the timer and wait for the steeping.
Time for tea!
In case you are interested, we use the Kids Love Tea range from Herbal Teas Australia. We can present the tea before the party and have the children choose which tea to use!
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