Saturday, February 20, 2010

Teddy Bear Tea

This afternoon Isabel participated in her second Teddy Bear Tea at school. This has got to be one of the most delightful things that they do at her school. The children are taught manners and table etiquette. They spend a month practicing and all their work culminates in this Tea. The children - dressed in beautiful dresses and suits and all carrying teddy bears - were paired off and walked in two by two after having their names announced.

Upon entering the dining area, they placed their bears on the steps and returned to their assigned table where upon the boys pulled out the chairs for the girls. The children sat up nice and tall and waited until the final two were seated. At that point, they all removed their cloth napkins from their teacups and placed them in their laps. Under the quiet directions of their instructor, the children then took a bite from their tiny heart-shaped cucumber sandwiches, chewed, wiped their mouths with their napkin and then took a sip of their raspberry tea. All the while, in the background, classical music softly played.

It was both lovely and surreal.

After about ten minutes the children were called to the (carpeted) steps and the stage area. A local musician talked about the story of Peter and the Wolf and how Prokofiev used different instruments to identify each of the characters in the story. He had a portable keyboard with him, and on it played the sounds of each of these specific instruments. He then read the story while accompanied by the music. The children were amazing! You could have heard a pin drop. When the story ended, the children were dismissed to return to their classes or to go home with their parents.

When I think of the fact that three years ago, we had just been home from China less than three weeks and compare that 14 month old with the 4 year old this afternoon, it is difficult to wrap my mind around the fact that they are one and the same. It makes me stop and wonder of the changes that lie ahead in the next three years when Isabel will be more than halfway through first grade and a preschooler no longer.



Wanda said...

Well....that is just the sweetest thing ever! What a fabulous way of teaching etiquette and grace and all those good things.

Whoever thought that up was brilliant.

Your sweetie could not look more adorable. Love the bl and wh of you two. You should frame that! (And hey, you have an image for next wed.)

Enjoy your week-end!

Kristy said...

I think the whole idea of this is just priceless!!!

Love and blessings, Kristy

Dita said...

Great photos...your baby girl is completely scrumptous!

Great Mommy and Me shot too!