The holidays have come and gone and now it is time for thank you notes (children everywhere sigh deeply and mutter under their breath) This doesn't have to be a chore, though, and the earlier you introduce it, the better! Preschoolers are very capable of writing thank you notes to others - with a little help...
Start by explaining why we write thank you notes to others. Someone loved you so much and went out of their way to give you a gift. It is kind and caring to let them know how much you appreciate that!
Show your child that you write thank you notes. I use these special note cards to write thank you notes. When Aunt Barbara gave me that candle for Christmas, I wrote her a thank you note. Do you want to hear what I wrote?
Give lots of creative choices. I have this awesome thank you note kit for you to use - it has stickers! I also have pink and purple paper and markers - you choose!
Help come up with the words. I will help you write what you want to say and then you decorate!
If your child is learning to write, let him/her write as much as possible. I see that you are writing the letters in "thank-you" and you wrote your name too!
Validate effort. Wow! You worked so hard on this thank you note. How do you think Grandma will feel when she gets this in the mail?
Help your child address the envelope ( a great skill to learn, even if snail mail is on its way out), put on the stamp and pop it in the mail. Sending and receiving mail is very fun for preschoolers so consider this a fun activity, instead of a chore.
Make sure you let your child know that thanking people, either with a note, or verbally, is a kind and considerate thing to do. When others go out of their way for us, we should thank them every time. Reinforcing this skill with your child teaches empathy, kindness and respect for others. And don't forget that your child is watching you - every time you thank someone else, you are teaching him/her to do the same.
Let them fly!