Is letter writing still a relevant skill to teach our students? In the digital age of text messages and email, should we still teach our students how to write friendly letters? We most definitely should. And here are some strong reasons why:
Letter writing has strong social and emotional benefits.
Teaching students how to write friendly letters improves their social skills. Students who write letters from an early age have better communication and social skills. Writing letters allows the writer to organize their thoughts into a story, think about the person they are writing to and what they would like to tell them.
For English language learners, writing friendly letters provides opportunities to practice conversation in writing and to improve grammar skills.
Writing letters encourages good manners.
Writing thank you letters to classroom helpers, school staff, and after a field trip is an important skill for students to learn.
Letter writing is an important life skill.
Learning the structure of a letter, learning formal and informal greetings and closings, can also be applied to writing emails. Everyone will have to write a letter at some time in their life. Resumes, job applications, college admittance forms, thank you letters, invitations, letters requesting information, and the list goes on.
Everyone loves to get mail.
As a child, I remember the sheer joy of getting something in the mail. It didn’t matter what it was! Everyone loves to get mail, especially when it is hand addressed specifically to them. Research shows that receiving personal letters makes us feel valued and connected to others. Researchers also found that writing letters about something that’s important to you makes you happier.
Friendly letter writing lesson plan
Teaching students how to write friendly letters is one of the first few lessons I teach in Writer’s Workshop.
For ready-to-use lesson plans and practice activities for teaching students how to write letters and address an envelope see this Friendly Letter Writing Unit.
I’ve put together 6 engaging PowerPoint minilessons, lesson plans, task cards and practice worksheets all in one no-prep resource.
Students will learn:
- How to write a letter
- Types of friendly letters
- Purposes of letter writing
- Parts of a friendly letter
- Greeting examples
- Closing examples
- Punctuating a letter
- Capitalization in a letter
- Addressing an envelope
- Responding to a letter
Click here for Friendly Letter Writing lessons with detailed lesson plans, a teaching PowerPoint, task cards and no-prep letter writing activities! This unit is filled with fun activities and is ideal for 2nd, 3rd, and even 4th grade students.
Save this post for when you teach friendly letter writing!
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