Do you ever wish, in this age of click-and-text, that your child could be a little more in touch with pen and paper?
Call me old fashioned, again …
I love letter writing,
and I want my grandgirls to know the delight of holding an unopened envelope in their little hands (not to mention develop lush letter-writing skills that transcend LOL and BFF).
Of course, computers and social media sites have made it easier than ever to connect with people far and wide, but these instant avenues to acquiring “friends” don’t come without a modicum of risk, especially where our kids are concerned.
(That’s grandmotherly apprehension for you.)
Anyhow, this train of thought led me to lament the fading of a lovely tradition: pen pals.
“Having a faraway pen pal is not only a fun way to boost reading and writing skills, but also a window into other cultures, or at least other parts of the country,” writes Teri Cettina of Parenting.com.
I couldn’t agree more!
But … where can a blooming Jane find a pen pal these days?
Right here: Amazing Kids.
The Amazing Kids! PenPals Program is a non-profit, literacy-based, traditional letter-writing program that is available to all children ages 5 to 17 worldwide.
(One could get carried away with the exclamation points, couldn’t she?)
Amazing Kids! Founder and President Alyse Rome explains that the program’s mission is to help inspire kids to discover their own unique gifts and to use them in positive and productive ways to make a difference in their lives and in the communities in which they live. “It offers one of the few remaining choices for finding an established, safe, and trusted traditional letter-writing pen pal program for children.”
Now, that’s what I’m talking about (!!!!!!!!!)
“The program helps foster new friendships with a global awareness and understanding of other cultures and places in the world,” Rome says. “Besides, it is so much fun for the kids to get letters, postcards and photographs of their pen pals in the mailbox!”
For ten dollars, a child can register (with the help of an adult), and Amazing Kids! will match her (or him) with a child of the same gender and age who may share similar interests and hobbies, based on the information provided on the registration form.
After that, it’s just a matter of putting pen to paper …
and figuring out how to reach the mailbox …