Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Tea Time

How  can we experience the letter 'T' without some tea?
Today, in our tent, we had a tea party!
Instead of simply tasting the tea, we enjoyed using many senses to really appreciate tea.

First dry tea leaves, from an opened tea bag, were passed around the group. Students enjoyed touching and smelling the tea leaves. They were intrigued that tea is made from adding hot water to dried plant leaves. 
"It is like how you make coffee," Ahava noted. 
I quickly thought to myself about coffee beans, grinders, french press, instant granules, and Keurigs. "Similar," I replied.  

Then we talked about how tea can have different plants and flavorings added to change its scent,color, and flavor.
The students sampled the smell of a variety of teas and tried to guess what was in it.

The students easily and gleefully identified vanilla and mint. 

Fruit blends were a lot trickier to discern.


After smelling. some students sampled their favorite smelling tea on a tasting stick. The students were largely disappointed with the flavor. These teas were caffeinated and heavily concentrated, so we did not drink them.

Instead I made a big pitcher of Good Earth Tea. Almost everyone enjoyed drinking the tea, some having many cups.

"What is the beracha for tea?" Ori asked.
"Is it adama?" Naftali suggested. I praised him for the logical suggestion, since we learned it is made from a plant.
"It is shehakol because that is the beracha for all drinks," Elazar explained.  I was impressed by all aspects of this conversation. Ori's interest in the right beracha, Naftali's thoughtful application of information, and Elazar's recall of preexisting knowledge are all wonderful parts of the learning process. 

I did not capture photos of the students enjoying the real tea, but here are shot of various tea parties.

Ironically, although Adina loves to play tea party, she refuses to taste real tea. One of the joys of imaginary play, is you can try things you would avoid in reality. 

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