A letter TO America…

 Today in ICT we used our ever improving computer skills to write a letter to our friends in America. Not only did this allow us to practise using Microsoft Word software but it encouraged us to make use of the simple sentences we have been practising in English with Ms Monaco.

In English we have been practising writing the phrases

  • My name is
  • I live at (my address in full including postcode)

In the letter to America we substituted our home addresses and instead used the school address. For the first time ever we had to stop and find out where Preston Lodge High School actually was!

We discovered that our school address is – Preston Lodge High School, Park View, Prestonpans, EH32 9QJ, Scotland.

We planned our letter on the whiteboard as a group – what we ought to put in the letter because it was the “proper thing to do”. This included the address, the date and the way of addressing the person we were writing to. We then thought about the information we might include. We chose to include information as follows –

  • My name is (christian name)
  • I go to Preston Lodge High School
  • I like ( a hobby)
  • My favourite food is
  • My favourite television programme is
  • My friends are called
  • My best subject is

The children could then personalise their own version of a standardised letter format and refer to the plan for help at any time in the proceedings.

The letter will then be printed and we will check to see if there are any obvious errors. We will especially look for capital letters that are missing or in the wrong place. We will make sure our sentences end with a full stop. We will ask a friend to read it – can they understand it? Can they make any helpful suggestions about making the letter “better”?

Once we have assessed our own letters we will then go back to the computers to write our FINAL DRAFT.

The finished letters will be sent to a number of places

  • To the pupils of Innes Middle School, Akron, Ohio
  • To the English folders we have in Mrs Monaco’s class
  • To the ICT folders we have to show we have used Word
  • To the On Our Doorstep file – for use as part of our contribution to the whole school project 2008

We may have written the letters in ICT but this was not just simply a computing skills lesson. In producing the letter for America we have –

  • Practised writing our important sentences from English
  • Enhanced/practised several language skills
  • Worked as a team to plan and produce a template for our letters
  • Executed another idea from our Cross Curricular project 2008 about living in East Lothian
  • Gained practise in crucial life skills – we need to know how to write a simple letter, how it is structured and what information or conventions are essential.

Oh yes – and in doing all this we learned a little of what it is to be efficient! 😉

Comments are closed.