Technology is nice, but it leaves people increasingly disconnected. Your child can have hundreds of friends on social networking sites like Facebook, but none of them may really know the true person he or she is: the hopes, the fears, the dreams. When you write someone a letter you show that you care. You share your ideas, your innermost thoughts, things that have been going on in your life, and more. It is more intimate than the daily complaining of an email or the quick, abbreviated update via text. Letters and notes develop vocabulary and expressive language. It isn’t uncommon to write better than one speaks. Electronic communication has, unfortunately, become written speech; this means that we write fragments and do not use proper grammar or punctuation. Letter writing is a way to put proper language skills into practice.
To help your child rediscover the art of letter writing, first have them select a handful of people that they would like to start a correspondence with. Depending on the age of the child, you may want to help them with this. Encourage them to write to a variety of people, whether it is a friend from camp, a cousin, a pal that has moved away, or a grandparent. What a great way to get to know a distant family member better and gain insight from an older generation!
To really get a child inspired, select the perfect materials for the correspondence. Consider using personalized stationery. Children’s stationery comes in a variety of colors and themes. There are options for sports fans, little princesses, camouflage, dump trucks, or even just really bright and fun colors. Having a special type of paper and envelopes to use will make this an activity they can hardly wait to begin. When your child sees his or her name on the top of the paper it will make this project definitively set apart from school related writing. You can also select matching stickers, envelopes, or address labels to make letter writing something they will really embrace!