Monday, December 29, 2014

Showing Gratitude

While the art of writing a thank you note has mostly gone out of style, in our family taking the time to show gratitude for all the wonderful gifts they received for Christmas is not only in good taste, but is also a practical learning and character building lesson!

 It reminds our children that someone took time, effort, and money to choose a special gift just for them and now they should take time and effort to show how grateful they are in return! Even though we take a short break from formal schooling for Christmas, learning happens every minute of the day. So before we plunge back into our normal routine, we take time to focus on writing thank you notes to teach a practical skill that, I believe, every adult (and child) should have in their arsenal of good manners and habits.

Thank you notes also incorporate the use of handwriting skills, phonics and spelling, using formal greetings and salutations, grammar, punctuation, the art of addressing an envelope, and many more skills that could be taught from a worksheet, but are much more easily taught in this practical form.
Thank you notes in our home greatly change from year to year based on the age of our children and their current skill levels. When my first little guy was 2, I simply had him color and paint on a small piece of cardstock and I wrote the note on top of his masterpiece. As my littles have gotten older I've had them draw a picture of what they were thankful for, had them trace notes that I've "dotted" out, had them fill in the blanks with the item they received and their name, to now writing the note completely themselves.

If you are wanting some thank you notes that your kids can work on today, here are some links to some cute cards you can easily print off, fill out and get in the mail!

Do you think writing thank you notes is an important and thoughtful skill for kids to learn?

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