Saturday, July 28, 2012

Teaching the next Generation!

Letters, letters, letters...can we get enough of them? Can we find the time to clear an hour or two of solitude in order to even write some? I woke up this Saturday morning and got the usual chores done and found that there was only one small errand that needed to be done ! I was actually looking at a Saturday where I had the luxury and leisure to catch up on some letter-writing projects! One such project was to tap into a reservoir of letter writing enthusiasm with my eight year old daughter, Ruthann. She had a couple of thank you letters to write and a letter to her pen pal and her grandmother. I thought that I would share some ideas that seem to keep enthusiasm fresh in the young. If you have any additional ideas or tricks of the trade, please feel free to post them here! 1. Have ample juvenile stationery! Fun, colorful, whimsical...or according to taste. My 8 year old daughter loves Victorian stationery! You can also print off free children's stationery off the internet. 2. Have plenty of stickers to decorate the envelopes. 3. Make homemade envelopes and stationery. 4. Have a stash of your child's art work to serve as "inserts" to the letters. 5. We love rubber stamping! Teach your child how to care for your stamps (cleaning them, storing them, etc.) I have also started a rubber stamp collection for my daughter. 6. Try having a card making workshop in your home and devote an afternoon to making homemade cards. 7. We have had a "Letter Writing Notebook" here at home for years. It is a simple three-ring binder with very simple sample letters that children might need. I also have some word bank pages of common words or sentences and a page with names to spell such as "Grandma", "Grandpa" or "Aunt Pat". This sometimes saves me from having to spell out everyone's name. 8. In the beginning it is useful to have the child dictate the letter to you, you write it out neatly and then have them copy it in their own writing. We are just now starting to get away from won't be long before she is a confident letter writer! 9. The child's letters are treasures...don't squelch the letter writing enthusiasm by demanding perfect handwriting, or perfect spelling. The important matter here is instill the joy of letter writing! Try to pass on this joy today!

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