Getting Kids to Write Thank You Notes

February 12th, 2013 posted by Elizabeth Pantley

child writing Doing the things that demonstrate good manners isn’t always easy or fun. But having good manners will help your child have better friendships, happier family relationships, and an easier time adjusting to the nuances of our society. No child is born with good manners. Manners are definitely something that need to be taught. Over time, and with practice, your child will naturally begin to repeat the things she has been taught from a young age. One of the social graces that is often overlooked is writing of the Thank You Note. It is so important that children learn from a young age that it is appropriate to write a thank you note anytime they receive a gift, or anytime they have been a guest at someone’s home. Children will learn what they are taught, and here are some ways to begin the habit of writing thank you notes.

Get the motion going

Soon after your child receives a gift, sit down with her and help her compose and write a thank you note. Put the paper in front of her, hand her a pen or crayon and suggest an opening line, “Let’s write Grandma’s thank you note. Maybe you want to say . . . ”

Take advantage of their computer skills

Have your child compose thank-you notes on the computer. Most kids enjoy working on the computer and are comfortable with it. Created with care, a computer-generated note, with an added personal comment, is an acceptable way for kids to show their appreciation.

Make it fun

Thank you notes don’t have to be boring! A child can be encouraged to get creative: a collage, a photo, a drawing – there are many fun ways of getting the point across. What’s most important is that the giver feels acknowledged.

Create a new family rule

Thank You Note first/Play second! You may only play with a gift after the thank you note has been written. This will get the job done quicker than anything else!

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Elizabeth Pantley (57 Posts)

Elizabeth Pantley is also the president of Better Beginnings, Inc. She is a popular speaker on family issues. Elizabeth’s newsletter, Parent Tips is seen in schools nationwide. She appears as a regular radio show guest and has been quoted in Parents, Parenting, Redbook, Good Housekeeping, American Baby, Twins, Working Mother, and Woman’s Day magazines. You can visit her website at

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Cindy Rowe is the owner/editor of Crazylou Creations blog. On the blog, you will find a little bit of crazy, and a whole lot of fun! As a FT working mother, she still finds time to create crafts, play around in the kitchen, plan parties and exercise. You'll find all of this and more on her blog!

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