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English Tea for Different Age Group
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Tea for two different age groups

No fruit punch at this party. These fifth-graders drank decaffeinated tea prepared by college students.

Courier Times


Rachel Morrison, a student at Philadelphia Biblical University, watches as Njeri Morrison puts whipped cream on top of a scone in the traditional English fashion, during a tea held the college students held for fifth grade students at Benjamin Rush Elementary.
(Photo: Kim Weimer/Courier Times)
Cucumber sandwiches and hot tea seemed a fitting way for some Bensalem fifth-graders to end their study of a book called "The View From Saturday" by E.L. Konigsburg.

In the book, four friends have various adventures, but always managed to meet for English-style tea. Students at Philadelphia Biblical University held the tea for 27 fifth-graders to culminate a tutoring program between the college and elementary students.

The kids toured the college's Langhorne Manor campus, then had scones, sandwiches, dessert and decaffeinated tea.

They also learned a little about what a real tea party is like when four of the college students gave a brief talk about the history of the English tea.

"Biscuits are cookies that are sweet, but not as sweet as the cookies we eat," Jamie Marsters, a college junior, told the kids. "It is also common [in England] to raise your pinky as you drink your tea."

That said, she held up her pinky and the kids laughed.

Professor Patricia Rahn said arranging the activity was good for her students, who are studying to be elementary teachers. Rahn teaches a course called development and diagnostic reading.

"It's so good for teachers in training. They did a wonderful job of putting it together. It made the book kind of come alive," Rahn said.

The college students developed the menu, prepared the food and brought treats pertaining to the book. The fifth-graders said they enjoyed the tea, but were more impressed by the college tour.

"I always liked my older cousin because she's in college and I thought it would be really cool to visit a college," said fifth-grader Jessica Haskell.

Classmate John Keaton said he had never visited a college campus before. "The gym - it was very, very big. The other gym had exercise machines I had never seen," John said.

Students at the college have tutored kids at Benjamin Rush and other Bensalem elementary schools for several years but this was the first time Rush students visited the college.

Rahn said she hoped it wouldn't be the last.

"My students were so excited to do it," Rahn said. "They were very excited when they saw the school bus pull up because they're not in schools yet. They're pre-teachers."



Saturday, April 7, 2001

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