10.19.2010

A Little Note of Thanks


Crane & Co. children's stationery by Express Yourself

In this era of texting, tweeting, instant messaging and e-mailing, children and teens have instant access to anyone and everyone. It's a time of too much and too little all at once. Is it uncommon for a tween to text a thank you to friends and family for their birthday gifts? Sadly, no. They may not even practice the art of a proper Thank You all together, simply never thanking their gift giver at all. Birthdays and holidays are the perfect opportunity to teach children the art of giving thanks. This can be a lesson in gratitude they carry with them for life. Here is a little help to get them started:
Step 1: Stationery, paper, pencils and markers are necessary to get your child excited about expressing their thanks. Let them help select what they like and want to use.
Step 2: Make a list of who and what. Writing down the gifts received right away creates order and an automatic checklist for writing the notes.
Step 3: Do it sooner, rather than later. Not only will the child still remember the gift, but they will still be excited about it.
Step 4: Remember to encourage your child to include what the gift was, how it made them feel, why they like it and/or what they plan on doing with the gift. Even a small reference to thanking them for coming to their party or sending something from so far will go a long way.
Step 5: Let your child have fun and write/draw what they want - don't micromanage this task. It can certainly make for some more interesting and memorable notes! Our mom has one note on her bulletin board from a family child friend - she was writing thanks for a pen she received and wrote the pen is great...minus the space between the pen and is...you get the idea!
Step 6: Address, stamp and send. Let your child pick out the stamps and drop the notes in the mailbox. Remind them how excited they are when they receive a handwritten note in the mail (so rare these days!).
Step 6: Let your child see you write your own thank you notes. If we continue to express our thanks, our children will learn to show their gratitude too.

{write on!}