Tea Party Rules

Tea Party Rules
By Ame Dyckman, ill. K.G. Campbell
Dyckman, A. 2013. Tea party rules. NY: Penguin.

Cub was playing in the woods when he smelled something delicious, and he came upon a tea party. When he asked the bear seated at the tea party for a cookie, it just stared straight ahead. And when he discovered the bear couldn’t eat cookies, he decided to eat the cookies for him. Just as he was about to eat the cookies, the little girl hosting the tea party returned, so Cub pretended to be that bear. But he soon found out that there were many rules to the tea party, rules he didn’t understand, but he would put up with them for cookies. There was one rule he couldn’t put up with though and that was to eat daintily. This surprised the girl. But it also inspired her to try out a new game, one that he knew the rules to: bear!

Quantitative Summary:
Readability Formula Grade
Flesch-Kincaid Grade Level 3.4
Gunning-Fog Score 4.6
Coleman-Liau Index 11.5
SMOG Index 3.8
Automated Readability Index 3.6
Average Grade Level 5.4

Qualitative Summary:
This book covers the concepts of playing by the rules in order to receive rewards, and encourages sharing. It also enforces the concepts of formal vs. informal play (fancy vs. bear). There are two characters, the bear and the girl, and the narrative is straight-forward and follows a linear chronology. Readability website (with the lack of lexile/AR scores) gives it an average 5th grade rating, which could be read to younger/Pre-K classes aloud.

Curriculum Tie Ins:

Great for discussions about rules, and about different types of play (formal vs. informal.)


English/Language Arts

1.0   General Reading Processes: Comprehension: Students will use a variety of strategies to understand what they read (construct meaning).


1. Develop comprehension skills through exposure to a variety of print and nonprint texts, including traditional print and electronic texts

a. Listen to critically, read, and discuss texts representing diversity in content, culture, authorship, and perspective, including areas such as race, gender, disability, religion, and socioeconomic background

b. *Read a minimum of 25 self-selected and/or assigned books or book equivalents representing various genres

c. Discuss reactions to and ideas/information gained from reading experiences with adults and peers in both formal and informal situations

3.0 Comprehension of Literary Text: Students will read, comprehend, interpret, analyze, and evaluate literary text.

Author’s website: