Polly put the kettle on…
Tea sets for children became popular in the 1700s and 1800s. They were produced for the wealthiest of families and were mostly made of porcelain. Although they were a part of the play experience for little girls who were imitating their mothers, they could still be quite formal events where the children dressed up and with invitations sent to guests by card.
Tea parties allowed for little girls to learn how to behave appropriately as a young lady, learn how to be a good hostess and to how make appropriate conversation. Along with tea parties for guests, children often held tea parties for their dolls and teddy bears.
- What are tea sets made of today? Can you still purchase porcelain tea sets?
- Do you hold tea parties with your friends or toys? Do you dress up? Describe what you do at your tea party.
- What types of food do you serve at a tea party?
- Look closely at the photographs. How have children’s tea parties changed and stayed the same over time?
- Are tea parties just for litle girls? Why do you think this may have changed over time?