Introduce ‘Silver of the Stars’ at group time

Have a ‘Talking Tub’ with different teapots, images, teabags, tea leaves, tea cosy etc to inspire conversation. Create mind-map with children’s ideas

Have different tea pots in the water tray to explore volume – ‘How many cups can you fill with each pot?’

Make different kinds of herbal tea from the garden and try at snack time

Listen to the ‘Little Tea Pot’ song and add props and words to the story corner

Role play – add a tea set to the house corner and allow children to pour or add a tea shop/cafe to the room

Research online where tea comes from

Visit a Chinese shop

Have a chinese tea party


Almost all children were engaged as they looked at the various images in the booklet. Most children could talk about different shapes and sizes of drinking vessels pictured. Children listened well as we talked about the various artists. Some children talked about visiting museums and art galleries with their parents.

All children contributed to the discussion. Many of the 4-5 year olds were able to ask questions and give their ideas about what they would like to do next with the teapots, eg. Have a tea party, have a tea shop, make tea, visit a shop. Some of the older children wanted to find out where tea came from. Almost all younger children listened well and gave relevant contributions to the discussions. A few children did not say very much but engaged well with the resources, filling up teapots with tea bags, smelling various teas and investigating tea cosy, tea strainer, etc.

Frobes tea party

Older children beginningto estimate which pot would hold most/least and also beginning to estimate the number of cups they might fill. Most older children could explain their reasoning. e.g ‘more cups because it’s a bigger teapot.’ Some younger children starting to give a random number as their estimate. Most younger children could identify small, medium, large.

All children helped to make tea. Some of the older children could identify ‘rosemary.’  Children were reintroduced to names of different herbs. All children helped pick herbs and washed them in the kitchen. Older children were able to explain why the herbs needed to be washed. Some younger children could also briefly explain why they should be washed. All children listened to hygiene and safety instructions. Most of the older children could talk about why they shouldn’t touch kettle, boiling water. Only some younger children could talk about safety. Children sampled tea at snack time. Children marked on the board whether they liked/disliked the tea and we counted results afterwards. Almost all children were comfortable pouring out their own tea. Only a few asked for help but managed by themselves with encouragement.

All children used the teacups, teapots and other props very well.  Almost all children had good control when pouring water from teapot. They listened well to instructions about how to hold teapot, how much water to pour and when to stop pouring. Some younger children needed a little support. Add teapots to the water tray. Teapots at snack time. The children did not engage with the printed teapot song in the house corner. Change song to make it more interactive, eg washing line to put song words/actions in the right order.

Only some children knew the song before. Children practised the song most days and quickly learnt the words and actions. A few quieter children, 3 with EAL and 2 with speech and language delay took part in the actions and made recognisable attempts to sing along with some of the words.

Almost all children used the tea set in the house corner and practised pouring, holding the top of the teapot steady and estimating when to stop.

Most children gave suggestions on what they would like in their tea shop, eg, flavours of tea, teapots, money, etc. Children were enthusiastic to choose herbs from the garden to add to shop, many could identify rosemary and sage (previously used to make herbal tea). Older children wrote signs, prices, opening hours. Some younger children made marks to represent their ideas. Children used the shop well, taking turns and following the sign ‘4 allowed.’ They would speak to each other, ask staff, or count by themselves to work out if there was too many/less in the area. Younger children played with real money, putting it in and out of till and handing it to each other. Older children’s conversation included, ‘How much?’

A few older children asked where tea came from and were interested in finding this out using the computer.

A small group of children discussed what they would need to buy from Chinese shop. They looked at different Chinese recipes and copied out ingredients onto a shopping list. Children looked for items in the shop with staff and the shop keeper. The children handed over money to the shop keeper. Children were able to greet the shop keeper in Mandarin. Children bought some different teas, discussed them and looked at them at nursery.

Children decided during a discussion who to invite to the tea party. Older children copied out words for invitations for their parents. Younger children were able to make marks to represent their ideas. Older children copied out the recipe and made own recipe book. Children baked Chinese cake and Chinese tea eggs.  All children were introduced to various equipment to measure ingredients. Almost all could name scales, measuring jug and spoons and describe what they are used for. A few younger thought the scales were clocks. Children were also introduced to various equipment to measure length and completed homework sheets to evaluate their learning. Children tried the different foods on offer. All children were able to pour their own tea from the teapot. Children took part in a Mandarin lesson. The older children were able to remember some phrases from previous lessons and were introduced to words tea, teacup, teapot and Happy New Year. All children listened well to a traditional Chinese story about the origin of tea. One parent did some Chinese writing with the children, Some children were able to copy the symbols very well and showed lots of patience and determination. Younger children enjoyed making marks with the paint. Parents told staff they had a lovely afternoon with children and staff.

Next Steps

Ask children, ‘Who would you like to have a cup of tea with?’ Suggest they draw a picture

Make teapots using junk or clay (use ‘Silver of the Stars’ booklet as inspiration)

Use artist’s work, different media to encourage children’s thinking and creativity

Visit an art gallery to see different exhibitions for inspiration

Continue with small group discussions and talking tubs. Encourage and support quieter children/ EAL/speech delay. Continue to provide interesting and inspiring resources for discussions and interaction.

Continue practising estimation, counting number of cups with children. Introduce different sized measuring jugs, cups, teapots and other containers. Add teapots into water trays to practice pouring, stopping and encourage use of mathematical language, discover and estimation. Add containers of same/similar size to encourage thought and discussion, eg. ‘the same, about the same’

Children draw and write a recipe for tea-making

Add teapots into mud kitchen

Safety in the kitchen; safety in the garden – what things are safe/
unsafe to eat?

Use different sized teapots and containers at snack time

Experience different tastes, smells and textures of foods and drinks

Re-introduce paying for snack; shopping list game; visit shops, pay for items; sell items for eco fund

Discuss information/tea making process with the whole group to try to get more children’s involvement, comments and opinions

Continue to visit local shops, use money, look at different foods (Polish shops)

Involve children in planning for their own expereiences and interests. Continue to encourgae children to apply their learning.

Continue to invite parents into nursey to take part in activities, read stories, etc

Work with younger children during baking activitieis, morning meeting, daily routines etc helping them to identiy the different between clock and scale and their function

Look at different festivals throughout the year and try different foods