Sunday, July 25, 2010

Pen Pals

A pen pal program is a fun way to give students a real-life lesson in social studies, language arts, geography, and more. Students love receiving mail and eagerly wait until they get a response. This year my class is headed west to Washington. I'm creating a bulletin board to display pictures, news, and information we gather from our new friends.
In the United States, the official label for a postman is "letter carrier". Women have been delivering mail in the United States since the late 1800s. I've named our letter carrier "Miss Susanna" after one of those first known female carriers.
I've been reading about the value of environmental print in the classroom - - all the text that covers classroom walls. Environmental print is a resource, a reference, and a teaching tool. I intend to use even the whimsical to teach lessons - - thus the name Miss Susanna.
My bulletin board tip today is to color skin tones using face powder and a makeup brush. It's an easy technique to achieve skin tone colors.

Read more about pen pal programs for students here and more about women in the postal system at the Smithsonian National Postal Museum.

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