Good news for those of us who despair that kids are always glued to their screens – they are actually writing and sending more letters than ever.
Research conducted by Blue Peter, Oxford University Press and the National Literacy Trust found that kids still love putting pen to paper. The trust’s eighth Annual Literacy Survey of more than 49,000 young people found that 36 per cent write letters in their free time to recipients including family, friends, Blue Peter and Father Christmas – the highest percentage it’s ever been.
Among young people’s top reasons for writing letters are to keep in touch with friends and family (53 per cent) and to help them remember special things that have happened (34 per cent).
Another 46 per cent said they write to make the person on the receiving end feel happy. Like 11-year-old kidney Ella Chadwick, who was honoured at the Pride of Britain awards last night for her charity work, which included writing 250 cards to young patients at the same children’s hospital that saved her life.
Asked why she wrote, Ella said: “Because I wanted to make them better.”
Blue Peter, which recently celebrated its 60 birthday, still receives an average of 500 letters a day. So far in 2018, the show has received 105,000 pieces of correspondence, compared to 40,000 in 2011.
“We are delighted that children and young people’s letter writing is at an all-time high in 2018,” said Jonathan Douglas, director of the National Literacy Trust.
“Not only does letter writing help children and young people become more confident writers and flourish at school, but we now know it can also play a role in supporting children’s mental wellbeing by enabling them to express their feelings, keep in touch with friends and loved ones, and feel happy.”
Here are 10 times we’ve loved seeing kids’ letters.
1. This seven-year-old’s letter to her mum.
See her other adorable letters here.
2. The kid who really wanted to wear sunglasses.
Totally legit. Read the full story here.
3. This child who tried to convince his parents he needed to play video games.
“Start letting him stay up all night!” Read more here.
4. The boy who wrote the sweetest note to the police.
What a cutie. Read the full story here.
5. The girl who owned up to being a stick thief.
We love her honesty. Read the full story here.
6. The girl who was far too honest.
And read other hilarious toilet stories here.
7. The young girl who was fighting for police cats.
We’re totally onboard. Read the full story here.
8. The kid who really wanted a souvenir.
Not subtle at all. Read the full story here.
9. The student who doesn’t understand why her teacher wears heels.
“Like, all day long?”
10. The kid who is just too cute for words.
“Thank you for giving me everything I want.”