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Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Wacky Week Wednesday - Dear Santa Letter Week 11/10-14


Need a fun way to teach letter writing? Need to jazz up your writing center? Take advantage of the cooler weather and ignite imagination and excitement in your students' writing – write a letter to Santa.
Now, I have to admit something. I just learned about the USPS Letters to Santa program. You have never heard of this program either? Well, here are facts and guidelines from USPS.com.

Facts

In 1912, Postmaster General Frank Hitchcock authorized postal employees and citizens to respond to letters to Santa.

Today, the popular holiday program is known nationwide as Letters to Santa. The exception is New York City; they have their own “Operation Santa” program.

Hundreds of thousands of children of all ages send letters to “Santa Claus, North Pole, Alaska.”

Unless these letters contain a complete Alaska address, they remain in the area they were mailed.

Postal “elves” go through the letters and separate those that express serious need.

Guidelines

A person wishing to adopt a letter can go to a Post Office, sign a form, and select one or more letters to take with them. The child’s address on the envelope will have been blocked out and the letter assigned a number.

After the individual fulfills the child’s wishes with a gift, he or she returns with the letter and gift to the same Post Office and pays the postage for the package. A postal employee will match the number on the letter with the child’s address, apply a label to it and put the package in the mail stream.


What a cool program!
There are numerous online templates for Santa letters. There are even sites for emailing Santa. My, how times have changed. 

Extension ideas: visit the post office and talk about how mail delivery and/or learn about the North Pole (would be a nice segway into next week's wacky week: Geography Awareness Week.


These two books will be a nice addition to this week's reading center:
http://www.amazon.com/LETTER-SANTA-Parragon-Books/dp/1445416670/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1415230719&sr=1-1&keywords=letter+to+santa

http://www.amazon.com/Letter-Santa-Claus-Michael-Neugebauer/dp/0735813590/ref=sr_1_5?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1415226285&sr=1-5&keywords=santa+letters


Here is a freebie to get you in the wintry season:
http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Snowman-Coloring-Pages-1534711

Have a cool week!!



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