This is my friend Katie. We went to the same college, and for about 3 years we had almost every class together. We built starburst towers in the back of the classroom and she made me a checklist of the due dates of all our assignments to keep me from going crazy. Then we did our student teaching in the same school. Then we came to Korea together. Then she left me to go back to Wisconsin and I cried.
Now she teaches 4th grade and we decided to make our students be pen pals. When I first told my kiddos what we were going to do I had to explain it a few times before they really understood it. "I will write a letter to America? And America will write a letter to me? Teacher real? (sometimes they just say real instead of really)" They giggled at all the silly American names like Drake and Sophie and told their new friends about their families and how they like chicken and pizza but they don't like studying.
Then 2 weeks later Katie's letters came, and oh my gosh. I've never answered so many questions about mail in my life.
"Teacher how did this get here?"
"It came in the mail kids."
"From America? Real?"
"On an airplane."
"Teacher did you write this letter?"
"No I didn't write that letter! Your American friend wrote to you."
"Sophie is a real person?"
Needless to say their little minds were blown and I told my boss we better plan a field trip to the post office, because mail is apparently very confusing.
We've done this a few times now and after they got pictures of their American friends I think it finally sunk in that there is a real child out there they are communicating with. They know about how long it takes to hear back after we've written and they ask for days when their mail is coming. And no matter what kind of mood they're in when class starts, they get so excited and happy to read their letters from their pen pals. It's adorable. Our most recent ones were Christmas cards with Christmas pencils. So cute!
So thanks for doing this Katie! I'm having just as much fun with it as the students are.