I love tea. Hot tea can warm me up on a frosty evening. Iced tea can cool me down on a hot day. It comes in endless flavors and makes the house smell so good!
My daycare kids often make tea or coffee in our outdoor kitchen area, but every so often one of them brings a child-sized tea set from home to share. Then, I put the kettle on and brew up some real tea for an indoor tea party.
Setting the Stage
Sometimes our tea parties are formal, sometimes causal. Sometimes we have tea time instead of snack in the afternoon. Whatever form our tea parties take, the kids love to set the table while I get the tea, milk and snacks together.
- A child sized tea set. (This green plastic set (affiliate link) works great for toddlers.)
- Small cloth napkins cut from a piece of fabric.
- Name cards (made by folding a small piece of paper or index card.)
- Dress up clothes for a formal event.
- Finger foods (carrots, finger sandwiches, cucumbers, crackers, cheese, etc.)
- A sponge, paper towels and/or rags.
- A large mug of warm tea (Celestial Seasonings Roastaroma is our current favorite.)
- Milk or milk substitute.
Once we are all settled, the kids pour their own tea, add milk and snack away. They tell stories and jokes, chit-chat and giggle.
We usually have quite a few spills as the kids experiment with how much tea and milk will fit into a cup, so we keep clean up materials on hand. They also like to taste different tea to milk ratios.
During all this fun, there is a lot of leaning going on. The kids get to experiment with volume, develop their fine motor skills and explore their senses. Writing their own name card gives them a chance to practice their penmanship.
For children who haven’t learned to write their names yet, it’s a chance for us to work on it together. A tea party is also a good time to practice manners, develop friendships and just spend some cozy time together.