Because Connections Academy® has been an online school for over 20 years, making the most of teacher-student and parent-student interactions has always been a priority.
In that vein, teaching kids how to write a thank you note, and helping them remember to do so, will serve them throughout their lives. The challenge is showing them how. But by using a thank you note template for kids or following a sample, children of all ages can not only get started, but can also begin building a very important habit of expressing gratitude before adulthood.
Especially with Teacher Appreciation Week coming up, this presents the perfect opportunity to teach and encourage your child to write a thank you note or two for their favorite teachers. Consider this article a helpful “how to write a thank you letter” lesson plan!
Get started by downloading this thank you letter template for kids.
Benefits of Expressing Gratitude for Children
Teaching children of all ages about gratitude is a valuable lesson. Even recent studies have touted the benefits in children’s schoolwork, social, and emotional well-being, as well as in their communities.
- Elementary school students: A 2019 study published in the Journal of Happiness Studies found that gratitude is linked to children who are happy by age 5.
- Middle school students: A 2008 study published in the Journal of School Psychology found that children who practiced gratitude were more optimistic, had better social support, and were more satisfied with their schools, friends, families, and themselves.
- High school students: A 2011 study published in Psychological Assessment titled “Measuring Gratitude in Youth: Assessing the Psychometric Properties of Adult Gratitude Scales in Children and Adolescents” showed that teens who embodied gratitude practices were more satisfied with their lives, were more engaged in schoolwork and hobbies, and had better grades. They also were shown to be less depressed and envious of their schoolmates.
Why Teach Kids to Write a Thank You Note Using a Template
Using a thank you card template or a gratitude letter template for students is a great way to start building this very important habit, especially for younger kids. Here are some reasons why:
- They have a guide throughout the writing process.
- They are shown what the card should sound like and how it should look.
- With a basic structure given to them, children can feel free to add their unique voice, which will make the thank you card more genuine.
- A template also gives kids ideas of what to say in a thank you card, which helps inspire their own ideas, and helps to make them more personal.
Thank you notes are a great way to help children start expressing gratitude, and using a sample thank you letter for kids is a great way to get them started. And, perhaps even more importantly, when children learn to express gratitude, they tend to feel it, too.
How Kids Can Write a Personalized Thank You Note
Does your child want to write a thank you note from scratch? Encourage them to craft creative thank you notes from kids with these five easy steps:
Step 1. Brainstorm Why You Want to Thank Them
On a piece of paper, jot down whatever comes to mind when you think of the person you are writing a thank you letter for. This could be a parent, teacher, or friend. Try making a list of characteristics that make them great, such as kindness, patience, motivation, creativity, and compassion.
Step 2. Remember the Specifics
Recall memories you have had with this person. Did your parent work extra hard with you to help you with your homework? Did a friend go out of the way to cheer you up on a bad day? Did a teacher find unique ways to make math fun? Write down specific instances that you appreciate.
Step 3. Use Nice Stationery
Think about the last time you received a card. In the age of technology, it probably felt like a welcome surprise. A nice card or stationery really goes the extra mile. It’s a simple gesture, but it can make all the difference!
Step 4. Include a Greeting
It’s no secret that emails and texts have changed the way we communicate. It’s common for everyday language to be direct and casual. However, when writing a thank you note, maintain a respectful tone. Be formal with your greeting by beginning with, “Dear ______.” If your child calls his or her teacher Mr. Bradford, use the same name in your greeting. This provides a great intro for ideal thank you letter format for elementary students, especially.
Step 5. Start Writing
You’re ready to put all the elements of a thank you note together! Here’s an example of how to how to write a thank you note to a teacher:
Dear Mom/Dad/Mr. Bradford,
Thank you for all you’ve done this year/a fun start to the school year. At first, I was nervous to begin third grade, but thanks to you, it’s now my favorite year!
You were amazing this year when we both had to learn fractions and decimals together. I know you’ve been busy, and I just wanted to say thank you for being my mom/dad/teacher!
I’m excited to see where the rest of the year/school year takes us. Thank you for everything you have done/taught me!
Sincerely, Emma Smith
Helpful Tips for How to Write a Thank You Note to a Teacher
Does your child need some help getting started? Check out these testimonials from some other students and their families about their favorite teachers:
“I am so very grateful for the helpfulness of my son's teachers and their willingness to meet with him … as a need arises. He has learned skills this year that will forever change his attitude toward learning and his confidence in his ability to learn new things.”
- Pearson Online Academy Parent
“I've had nothing but positive experiences with the teachers and staff at Person Online Academy. Everyone there listens carefully and provides whatever support has been requested. Remote school isn't for every student, but for those that thrive remotely, I can't think of a better place!”
- Pearson Online Academy Parent
“The whole learning program is set up to help the student to excel. I like that the teachers seem invested and interested in their students doing well in the courses. The follow-up is a really great motivation to the students, at least they know that the teacher is available when needed.”
-Pearson Online Academy Parent
When it comes to kids’ thank you notes, no matter how big or small, a handwritten note or a thoughtful gift can go a long way in showing appreciation for a parent, teacher, or friend. And Teacher Appreciation Week is the perfect time to give these thank you note ideas for kids a try!