Pen pals (or penpals or pen friends) are people who regularly write each other, in particular in the case of snail mail. A penpal relationship is often used to practice writing and reading in a foreign language, improving literacy, to learn more about other countries and life-styles, and just to reach out and communicate with a fellow human being. Some people remain penpals for only a short time, while others continue to exchange letters and presents life-long. Some penpals eventually arrange to meet in 'real-life'. Penpals come in all ages, nationalities and cultures. Being part of a penpal network can be a way to gain a valuable understanding of the world, and an appreciation for cultures and lifestyles very different to your own. ~WordiQ.com
I often subscribe to different forums and discussion boards that are all related to homeschooling for more information and I came across The Christian Homeschool Hub founded by Lynda Ackert.
While being created Lynda had an idea (or was approached) about starting a Pen Pal group. After the group was created I gave it another week or so and then decided to join in the fun. I thought my boys can use this method to improve their writing skill exercises and it gives them a great way to correspond with others.
I have a 12 year old and a 9 year old...and both do not have many privileges on the Internet. Emailing as a first way of communication didn't rub the right way for me. Something about actually using your penmanship and writing on paper and receiving a personal letter in the mail (snail mail) is an awesome experience. Even in this day and age...
Big or small-a personal, written letter is always nice to get in the mail. Well, my oldest has a pen pal from Colorado and my second oldest from New Mexico. I hope that their counterparts are excited that they are receiving letters from Germany!! ;)
I am not sure there is an expiration date to the pen pal group, but we'll see how it goes. Above you can see that they both received their first letters from their pen pals around the same time and they were excited to read. Anyway, just wanted to share the joys of participating with on-line groups and that even though we are overseas---we still can participate of things that are which are in America.
Even though the boys have never been to Colorado or New Mexico, I hope that this exercise makes them want to venture out! LOL!! I just thought about that...we are a Military Family; therefore, I don't think it's the venture out that they have issues with...it's the writing that they do. I pray that with having real-life pen pals; it gets their writing skills a go and done with excitement! So far so good.