Gratitude: Thank You Notes

Thank You

On a recent episode of ABC’s “The Middle” Frankie finds a bag of unfinished and long overdue thank you notes under her son, Axl’s, bed. Horrified by her discovery, she issues her ultimatum. As long as he is living in her house, he is to finish the notes! Yes, it’s comedy, but in the end, Axl gets a handwritten note from his uncle showing how much his gesture is appreciated.

With these sentiments in mind, June is a wonderful time of year to count your blessings. Spring brings the end of school, graduations, and many occasions to celebrate. It’s also the perfect time to show gratitude. Teach the art of writing thank you notes and let your students show their appreciation for others who have helped them, especially throughout the school year.

How to Write a Thank You Note

It’s never too early to learn five basic parts to a well-written thank you note.

 

The Greeting

Just as in the friendly letter, begin with the person’s name (and title) followed by a comma.

Dear Mrs. Maxwell,

 

The Gratitude

Tell what you are thankful for. Use the words “Thank you.”

Thank you for coming to our class each week to help us with math.

 

Elaborate, or tell more.

Be specific and give examples. Why are you thankful?

I am so much better with multiplication since I have been working with you each week.

 

Restate your thanks and end with a personal touch. Speak from the heart.

Thank you again for your help. Maybe I will be lucky enough to work with you next year.

 

Closing, just as in a friendly letter.

Choose a closing that fits your situation. Don’t forget to sign your name.

Sincerely, Many thanks, Thanks again, Your friend,

 

A handwritten thank you can turn into a cherished memento. If you use parent volunteers, this is a perfect time for students to show their gratitude. Bus drivers, playground supervisors, custodians, cafeteria workers, and other school staff will also appreciate a word of thanks this time of year. Click the image below to download the appropriate stationery for your students to decorate and get started.

 

Next year, don’t wait until June to start writing thank you notes. Get your students writing notes of thanks for holiday gifts they’ve received. It’s best to send thank you notes for gifts as soon as possible, but as Frankie Heck told her son, it’s never too late. Besides reinforcing letter-writing skills, students can practice addressing envelopes and writing their own address. Imagine how elated Grandma and Aunt Kathy will be to get a handwritten thank you in the mail!

Post Author: Pat K

Pat K. is a retired elementary teacher who has found a new career as a writer for Simple Solutions. She holds a Masters Degree and National Board Certification as a Middle Childhood Generalist. She enjoys the Cleveland Indians, Ohio State Buckeyes, golf, and learning new things, (which is why she loves working at Simple Solutions)!