The other day we received a surprise package in the mail from grandma. Inside was this cute birthday chair cover and table runner. My mom is often quilting or crafting and occasionally we get to be the recipients of it. The kids were so excited they wanted to stick it on the chair immediately and started figuring out who would be the lucky person next to use it on their birthday.
This instigated the desire in many of them to want to write her some thank you notes right then and there. They were already pulling out markers and crayons and getting started. When I see opportunities like this where my kids are excited to write I have learned to step back on my plans, and let them go at it. I have found that I am a lot more successful if I incorporate natural, normal daily activities that include writing rather than forcing a writing assignment. I still do those occasionally, but if I can get them writing and sharing their ideas naturally it is a much smoother process. This was one of those times.
Pretty soon we had a full-fledged card making party going on. Savannah pulled out her pop up book that she got for her birthday and started planning her card. Isaac was immediately on that bandwagon too.
This is an awesome book for kids on how to make basic pop up cards. When I was doing my student teaching one of the teachers gave me this book as a parting gift after we had done a lesson on pop up cards. The author shares all kinds of simple pop ups that any kid can make. It sure makes writing a lot more fun. It could easily be incorporated into stories or books as well.
I just noticed that she has a second book as well which we might need to add to our collection later. She really does a great job at making is super simple for children and suggesting many uses for the techniques.
They found a card with a boy reaching out for hugs and thought it would be perfect for their thank you cards.
I think they turned out great! Once they got started they realized they had forgotten their cousin’s birthday that was the day previous so they decided they needed to make some birthday cards as well to send him.
Once Savannah got working on her pop up card, she decided to send it to her great-grandma who she felt was probably lonely and could use a card. She later received a card back from that grandma telling her that she had made her day! I’m hoping we can get them to write more letters to her and develop a closer relationship since we don’t see her very often.
The best part about activities like this is that the kids do the whole thing. I’m just there to help. There is no pushing or prodding from me. They are excited to write, which is not always the case. They learn how to address envelopes, they are thinking of others, they are getting art in at the same time. I am also able to work on other things while they were engaged for a couple of hours. That is a definite plus! I am hoping that as I’m working on my family history goal I can give my kids more opportunities to write their relatives, learn more about them and strengthen relationships.
Do you know anyone that could benefit from a card in the mail today?
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