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OUR VIEW: A lost art revived in Mitchell class

The written word is dying. Well, at least physically hard-writing letters and short notes is slowly fading away. Emails, text messages and instant chats are taking over in our technology-driven society, significantly changing the way students are...

The written word is dying.

Well, at least physically hard-writing letters and short notes is slowly fading away.

Emails, text messages and instant chats are taking over in our technology-driven society, significantly changing the way students are being taught how to formulate their thoughts.

Understandably so, our educators are moving away from teaching cursive writing and introducing typing at earlier ages. The keyboard - whether it's on an iPad, computer or on a smartphone - is a more familiar tool than the pen by age 10.

It's sad.

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That's why we were elated to hear that two Mitchell educators put together a project to introduce fifth-graders to writing letters with high school students. Brett and Carli Flemmer, husband and wife, are teachers in the Mitchell School District who are in different buildings but worked together for an important cause.

Brett, a fifth-grade teacher at Gertie Belle Rogers Elementary, and Carli, a high school English teacher, asked students to become pen pals and exchange letters throughout the school year. This was the third year that students participated in the lesson and we hope it continues for years to come.

Always great is a lesson plan that includes hands-on learning, rather than the traditional lecture method in which a teacher stands in front of the room. This is a great example of that.

Email has undoubtedly taken over as the main communication method, but we all should know how to sit down and handwrite a letter.

That's because some of the older generations either don't have email or choose not to check it daily. A handwritten letter is more meaningful. How often has a text message or email showed true emotion? It's rare.

Also, there's a significant importance handwritten letters have on our world's history. War stories and love letters during times of conflict have recorded lasting family memories. Those letters can be kept for centuries.

So here's to the art of the handwritten letter and hopes that educators continue to teach the practice. We're happy to see our local teachers recognizing its value.

Related Topics: OUR VIEW
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