Why Montessori Students Will Serve You Tea

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DSC_0008If you’ve ever been a guest in an OMS Montessori Casa classroom, there’s a good chance a student has served you tea or coffee. Serving tea and coffee is a part of the Casa curriculum called the lessons of Grace and Courtesy. We teach these lessons in order to help the child become an active, contributing member of the classroom community and eventually of society. It also helps the child gain confidence in his abilities and boost his self-esteem.

Serving tea and coffee is one of the tools we give the child to show him how to act and conduct himself in his relations with other people. This activity is considered one of the civilities of our society and a social grace that brings a lot of positive feedback from those who are served. When the child receives this positive reinforcement, he feels very good about himself.

Serving tea/coffee is actually a very complex activity involving a lot of skills. The child has to first approach the guest and ask if they’d like tea or coffee. Would they like milk and sugar? They then have to remember the order. They have to know what equipment they need and order it on the tray. In some classes, the children grind the beans and make coffee in a coffee maker. After the coffee is made, they have to very carefully carry it over to their guest.

It is an activity that we take for granted as adults, but it is actually a milestone and a point of arrival for the young child.