Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Children and Thank-You Letters


The thank-you letter is probably the first kind of correspondence your child will send. Make the experience as comfortable as possible. A thank-you note from a seven year old does not have to be spelled and punctuated perfectly. It is all right for a note from a child to look like a note from a child. Praise any effort a child makes to correspond. But the basic rules apply even to the very young. The note needs a salutation. Mention the specific gift or favor. Sign with Love or other appropriate sentiment. Later, thank-you notes can include an acknowledgment of the effort behind the gift: “You must have spent the whole day baking these cookies.” You can also let the giver know how the gift will be used: “These cookies will be a big hit at my sleep-over party tomorrow.” And yes, a child must send thank-you notes for Christmas gifts unless the giver is present—and is properly thanked—when the gift is opened. Don’t allow your children to use preprinted thank-you notes. They defeat the purpose of giving personal thanks for a personal gift.

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