After every special occasion involving gifts, there’s the inevitable round of thank-you cards. And while you do want to show gratefulness, they probably aren’t something you look forward to writing. After all, who has the time?
But, for your children, writing thank-you notes has a lot of value. They give your children a chance to. . .
1. Practice Composition Skills
Thank-you cards give your children an opportunity to apply composition skills outside of their studies. If they follow the traditional “thank-you-for-your-gift-I-will-use-it-for . . .” format of thank-you notes, they’ll need to consider what the item is, how it’s typically used and for what, and who they’re writing to. All these considerations involve important writing skills. For instance, they might change their tone if they’re addressing a jovial uncle as opposed to an affectionate grandma.
2. Practice Writing and Grammar Skills
Thank-you notes also give your children an opportunity to practice handwriting and grammar skills. I don’t know about you, but I’ve never seen a thank-you card on college-ruled card stock. Writing cards encourages them to practice writing in a straight line, rather than letting their writing curve up or down. And since they won’t want to ruin the card by making too many mistakes, they’ll need to recall what they’ve learned about grammar and spelling to get it right the first time.
3. Practice Gratitude
But most importantly, thank-you notes are an opportunity to teach your children how to have a spirit of gratitude for the things they’ve been given. It’s a time to pause and appreciate the value of not only the gift but also the relationship with the giver. Even if they may not fully appreciate the gift itself, they can appreciate how much the giver means to them. After all, we as believers may never be able to fully comprehend the sacrifice Christ made for us, but we can love Christ because of the love He has shown us.
So encourage your children to take the time and write handwritten thank-you notes this year! At the very least, you can count them as extra credit later.