Thursday, December 15, 2011

Etiquette: Thank you Notes and Kids

Even Santa writes Thank You notes!
The joy of Christmas for children often has to do with opening presents and there are many important life lessons to be learned.  This is a perfect opportunity to teach how to express gratitude for all the gifts received.  No matter the age, it is important to take the time to thank the person for their gift.  As parents, we need to model this.  My son made me a gift for Christmas at school.  I thanked him the the special gift and later put a thank you letter in our mailbox for him expressing my gratitude.  He was so excited to find that letter in the mailbox.
My mom always has a thank you note in the mail within days of receiving a gift.  I am always amazed but know how much she appreciates any token of love given to her.  I remember as a child having to write thank you notes with my brothers after Christmas.  It was not my most favorite day, but looking back I am so glad my mom made us write them.  Now that I am the mom, there are a few ways I think I can make it a little less painful for all involved.  
Type of Cards:  
Photo cards:  Take one of your favorite holiday photos and turn them into personalized note cards.  You can make your own by printing out your photo and gluing them on paper or go to any online photo store and upload your photo to create your cards. ( ,
Child Creations:  If your child likes to draw, let them draw the front of the card.  If they have a lot of thank you notes to write, you can scan the art and print additional cards.
Store Bought:  Let your child pick out their own stationary
What to say:  Thank the gift giver for the particular gift and tell them why or how it is appreciated, even if it is not the “best” gift.  Mention something special about Christmas and wish them a Nappy New Year.  Keep it simple!
Young Children:  Adults can write the letter by asking their children about the gift and why they like it.  This is a good time to model writing with your children and teach beginning sounds.  You can have them “write”/scribble their names.
Writers:  Encourage your child to write what they can or even do a fill-in the blank type card.

Let you children take part in putting on the stamp, putting stickers on the envelops or walking them out to the mailbox.  Tell them how happy the receiver will be when they get their special note in the mail.
Thank you for reading this and I hope you and your children have fun writing your Thank You notes together. 

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