Oh! I think this was my most favorite activity of the year!The children were tickled to spend a day investigating all things tea. We set up our tea set in the play kitchen, painted with tea, sampled tea and then made our own blends complete with hand drawn labels. The tea enthusiasm carried out to the ned of the school year and that little tin tea set got a BIG work out!
I gathered an assortment of dried kid-friendly herbs used for tisanes at our local natural market. If you have a Whole Foods
or other natural market or co-op in your town, check out their bulk bins. A small scoop goes a long way and the cost is well under a dollar. We did this activity after we sampled our teas. I set out the dried herbs on our table using jar lids as holders. I wrote on the table with a dry erase marker labeling each herb so that I could remember which was which and add an element of print to the activity (one of my kiddos is a reader).
I held up each lid and anounced the name of the herb. From there we talked about what we saw. The children described the herbs with a lot of enthusiasm and loved leaning over the herbs to take in the scent. They use their pinching fingers (at first) to add bits to their tea jars (empty spice jars from World Market) and soon ended up scooping and pouring large portions into their jars. Make sure you clean the table before you begin. Some of the children grasped and scooped whichever herb was closest while others purposefully chose what they wanted, how much, and when. It was all sorts of cool!
After they filled their jars, we put the lids on and brought the markers and labels out. I used these Martha Stewart
labels which I found at Michaels
. They have a lot of heft and are pretty with a bit less tack then mailing labels (so that the jars can be reused for some other purpose). After the kiddos decorated their labels they named their teas and I wrote the names over their art. We had Daddy Tea
, Spring Tea
and E's Tea
to name a few.
The Nitty Gritty:
*dried edibles and herbs such as spearmint, rose, and chamomile
*clean empty spice jars like these
*shallow dishes or lids for sorting
*blank labels like these
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