How to Teach Students to Write a Friendly Letter

Teach students to write a friendly letter to a pen pal.

The writing etiquette for a friendly letter differs greatly from a more formal letter. Writing a friendly letter requires using the right tone in order to avoid sounding stern. You can teach students to write a friendly letter for a variety of purposes. For instance, you can instruct your students to write a personal letter to a new acquaintance, a pen pal or a military solider overseas. Whatever the purpose, teach your students the guidelines to send a friendly letter via postal mail or email.

Teach students to write a heading. The heading includes a return address at the top right hand corner of the letter. Skip a line. Have them write the date under their address.

Instruct the students to write a greeting. Use a friendly and common greeting such as "Dear" followed by the first name of the person and a comma. Ask the students to skip two lines and put the greeting on the left hand side of the letter (opposite side of the heading).

Ask the students to skip a line and start a new paragraph with an indent. Instruct your students to write the body of their letter. Encourage them to start the letter expressing good will or gratitude toward the receipt. Tell the students to write the letter as if they are having a conversation with their friend. Have them tell their friend about a new activity in which they are participating, and have them inquire about their friend's hobbies as well.

Teach your students the various informal closing salutations they can choose to use to end their letters. Suggest they use a friendly closing such as "Love," "Kindest Regards" or "Sincerely." Instruct them to skip a line after the body of their letter and write their closing, followed by their signature.

Instruct the students to add a postscript or P.S. at the end of the letter, if they wish. This is an additional friendly note to emphasize something mentioned in the letter.

  • Ask the students to write a rough draft and check for grammar mistakes before writing the final letter. Take this time to review grammar rules with your students, if applicable.

Mary Corbin began her career writing for online and print media in Indianapolis. Since 2004, she has covered subjects such as home and family, technology and legal issues. Working in the broadcast industry, Corbin created articles for marketing, public relations and business matters. She graduated with a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Indiana University.