I grew up writing thank you notes. Every Christmas and birthday, I knew that after celebrations were over, it was time to sit down and write thank you notes. Eventually I began writing them for general kindness such as when a sweet friend decided to surprise me with my favorite starbucks. Everyone enjoys receiving a thank you note in the mail. Yet I hear people repeatedly say that there is no need for a snail mail thank you, that an email or face to face is just fine. I disagree wholeheartedly. I think a snail mail card is absolutely necessary. It shows an extra effort and appreciation for the kindness extended to you. Children should learn to write these early so that it forms a natural habit.
While my 4 year old can't write more than her name yet, she does write thank you notes. I ask her what she wants it to say and I write exactly what she says which is normally, "hi. i love you. thank you for my lalaloopsy. she is cute." Then she signs in her crazy huge all capitals kind of way.
My 7 year old has been writing her own thank you notes since the end of Kindergarten. It has been fun to see how she has progressed. For instance, it took her 4 weeks this past Christmas to write all 30 of her thank you cards. But she persisted and worked hard on each and every one of them. Then in February when she wrote her birthday thank you notes, they took her only a few days to write about 15 notes. What makes it fun for her is that she gets personalized notecards. She is quite the little designer and is always asking me to design her specific cards. It's a lot of fun for both of us.
She was recently invited to see Disney on Ice with her best buddy. She had so much fun!! When we got home she said, Mommy I think I should probably send them a thank you note. Fist pump!! So excited that she is thinking of others and appreciating their generosity in her life.