Letters to the author

When a teacher has read one of my books to the class and then has the kids write me letters, I enjoy reading and responding to them, especially when the letters are mailed as a group, not individually. Of course, I always love to get the genuine fan letters written not as a class assignment but because someone truly likes my work.

Recently I’ve been swamped with letters from students (56 of them yesterday) who say they are writing to me as a way to learn the proper way to write a letter. The problem is that they hope for a response and I simply don’t have time to answer them all.

I think there is a better way for teachers to handle this. Why not have the students write to someone who is serving in the armed forces? Or write letters to the elderly in a local nursing home. There are many lonely people who would be pleased to receive a letter from a child. It’s an opportunity to teach compassion, which is even more important than knowing the right way to write a letter.

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