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|Grades||3 – 8|
Why Use This Tool
E-mail and text messaging have changed the way people communicate, but the personal letter still has a place. This online tool shows children the parts of a letter and discusses why they might send one. Children can write a letter or two and put them in the mail. It’s a rare treat to receive one these days!
Children begin by viewing a sample letter and learning the five key parts: the heading, salutation, body, closing, and signature. After choosing to write a friendly or business letter, children are prompted for the necessary information and offered suggestions. For instance, children will get advice on appropriate closings for a business letter (Sincerely or Yours Truly) and learn about the option of writing a P.S. in a friendly letter. There’s also a printable tip sheet on addressing an envelope.
- Help children practice writing business letters by having them write a more formal letter to someone they admire, such as an athlete, author, or someone who is important in their town or state. With any luck, the recipient will be kind enough to write back.
- Encourage children to use the friendly letter to keep in touch with relatives and friends. Invite them to write thank you letters after a birthday celebration or postcards while away on vacation.
- Read books about letters or ones written as a series of letters or diary entries. Try the Dear America series, or one of these titles: The Jolly Postman or Other People’s Letters by Janet and Allan Ahlberg, A Letter to Amy by Ezra Jack Keats, Letters From Camp by Kate Klise, or Letters From Wolfie by Patti Sherlock.
We invite you to share your experiences with this resource and provide us with any feedback on how it can be improved.