Letters and postcards
Connecting with loved ones
I don’t know about you, but I still feel excited when I get mail that is not a bill for me to pay. As we approach the end of the year, you may find yourself writing postcards, Christmas cards, or new year wishes.
This is a special time of the year to connect with people we miss or people we see every day, to send them good wishes for the new year and remind them that we are thinking of them. My children decided to create some Christmas bookmarks for their friends, and filled them with stickers and positive words.
Today, letter-writing is nowhere near as widespread as it used to be, and while I understand that many adults will say that they still write a lot (using email and social media), children often miss out on informal writing opportunities as they do not use technology the way adults do.
When I was in school, I really wasn’t a big fan of writing letters as part of language class assignments. This was mainly because it was always very formal and constrained, and I was never sure if I had to sign off with “Yours sincerely”, “Yours faithfully”, “Regards”, and so on.
This December, I want to encourage you to go old-school and make time for your children to write letters, postcards, or notes to anyone they have good wishes for. It is important for children to write with meaning, not just as part of a school exercise.
You can keep costs down by sending letters to people within your household, your building, your school.
This is the perfect time to sit down and do some writing for fun.
For adults, there are many examples of epistolary novels (fictional stories told primarily through letters), and children can read books such as The Jolly Postman, by Janet and Allan Ahlberg, or The Day The Crayons Quit, by Drew Daywalt and Oliver Jeffers.