Lesson Plan

Experience Chanoyu: A Japanese Tea Gathering

As part of the study of Japanese cultural history, introduce your class members to Chanoyu, the Way of Tea. After a discussion of the history and key elements of Chanoyu, class groups perform the ceremony.

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Classroom Considerations
  • The activity assumes that participants have some knowledge of Japanese culture and Zen Buddhism
  • In addition to the sites listed in the resource, a variety of tea ceremony videos are available on YouTube
  • Rather than the lecture-style format, consider asking groups to research the background and history of Chanoyu and have them present their findings to the class
  • Groups might also research the resources available in your community
  • Detailed instructions for the ceremony are included
  • A materials list is also provided
  • The activity assumes class members will make connections between the ceremony and the principles and practices of Zen Buddhism