Poetry Teatime: Every day!
Learning about Bravewriter from a home school friend, I was intrigued by the idea of mixing reading with a special teatime for my young scholars (age 6, 4 and 2). I am always on the look out for ways to use our school time to intentionally build in more moments to enjoy one another and learn. As an avid tea drink myself who plans out the right temperature of the water and correct steeping time, I was elated to introduce my kids to the art of the tea ceremony. We set out a special silver tea tray to serve the tea, offer the treat, all the time trying to use our best posture, manners and conversation at the table. My kids thought only of apple juice as the ultimate in beverages, so I set out with a plan to introduce new flavors to their palates. We started in September with lemonade in a tea cup, then we moved on to trying iced raspberry tea, later they tried tepid peach, blueberry, and sweet wild orange tea.
As excited as I am about sharing tea with my kids, their favorite part is the treats. At first, Tuesday would slip up on me and I wouldn’t have the time or energy to bake a special treat and set up tea. It was my oldest daughter’s idea to buy store bought cookies as “back up” and store in the freezer (our special hiding place from daddy’s nighttime raids) so we could be prepared for Tuesdays. This arrangement sealed the deal. Tuesday Teatime became so popular the kids voted for teatime every day. So now we enjoy reading circle and poetry teatime each day around 2pm.
Word somehow spread to the neighbors that we had cookies and tea each day. Now on the early release days from the public school up the street, two neighbor kids arrive at our door promptly at tea time, eager to join us. At first, the neighbor girl and her brother seemed to only want the cookie, but then she heard the stories and often asks for more, or asks what we will read next time.
As for the poetry selections, we have hovered a long time on nursery rhymes and silly poems from Where the Sidewalk Ends. The day these pictures were taken, we read from the “A Child’s Introduction to Poetry” by Michael Driscoll focusing on reading all 14 verses of “Old Mother Hubbard” by Sarah Catherine Martin. My son climbed onto my lap and placed his hand on mine as I held the book open. Our neighbor friend leaned forward to hear more as she enjoyed the easy rhyme and the silly story of the poem, sharing with me how much she likes our family school compared to her. My daughter, who is a timid reader, chiming in proudly with the words that she could read herself. I treasured that moment, soaking up their cuteness and excitement over poetry and tea with me.
So thank you Brave Writer for sharing this special tradition that has helped me enjoy a special time with my kids and reach out and bless the neighbor kids too.