Sunday, March 19, 2017

Letters for Life

     One of the most crucial yet most difficult skills to teach is writing. The task of just thinking about writing often overwhelms students and can cause them to shut down. My life skills students all have difficulty with handwriting, reading, spelling, and organization. So, when it comes to writing my motto is: "slow and steady wins the race." 
    In the beginning of the school year we talk a lot about topic sentences. Next we move on to three important detail sentences. Currently we are working on three types of topic sentences: number, feeling, and fact. Next we will add the conclusion sentence, then voila...we have a complete paragraph. We of course work on our spelling, capitalization, and grammar in conjunction with writing a paragraph. My students are doing great with their writing and I couldn't be more proud of them. I have heard very little whining through this whole process. 
    Since I am a "Life Skills" teacher I wanted to come up with a way to connect my students writing with the real world. This is how our "Letters for Life"project began. My goal was for my students to make cards and write letters to anyone who was lonely or needed cheering up. Sometimes just getting a card and knowing that someone cares can make a world of difference to them. Cards of kindness, I like to call them. 
   Somehow, I stumbled upon a group called, "Little Warrior Cards." It's a group of people started by moms who send cards to children who are sick or disabled. I asked for 10 children's names and addresses to match them to the students in my class. Our first cards went out near Christmas time. Each of my students has been assigned a child to send cards to once a month. Once the child receives heir card, his/her parent posts a picture of their child with the cards. My students love hearing how their "Little warrior Buddies" are doing. I consider this a win-win situation. My students are able to practice their skill at following directions (to make the card), their skill at writing both handwriting and paragraph, kindness skills which we practice everyday, and postal skills.
Their new friends are now connected with a student who will send them cards once a month. I cannot say enough good about our "little Warrior Buddies" and their parents. These parents are dealing with a critically ill child every day, yet still spread so much kindness themselves. The children who are dealing with diseases and disabilities that no one should ever have to face do it with such grace and bravery. One goal for this group is to spread the word that childhood cancer needs more money for research. Their ultimate goal is however to to bring happiness to their children during their darkest hours. I admire this group and their efforts so much.
     In conclusion, I'd like to add that if you know someone who could use a little pick-me-up I know the best people to bring joy to them. Simply message me with their address, approximate age, and likes at: You can find the page under: Educational strategies and activities, followed by service projects, "Letters 4 Life" or simply go to the contact page.  My students and I thank you in advance.


No comments:

Post a Comment