Learning About Gratitude with Kevin Henkes

by Jen on August 20, 2012 in craft,gratitude,kevin henkes,mailbox,summer virtual book club

learning about gratitude

As the summer comes to a close we have been looking back at our experiences with the Summer Virtual Book Club for Kids. What a great time we have had. The Mo Willems inspired collage art we created back in June was great fun. In July, we tried illustrating words, which was really interesting. So, when we learned that this month’s author was going to be Kevin Henkes we were excited to dive into his books. After doing a little research we decided to read and work with the book “Goodbye Curtis”.

good bye curtis book

“Goodbye Curtis” is a story about an elderly, letter carrier named Curtis. Curtis is retiring and on his very last day of work all of the houses on his route leave him special treats in their mailboxes. At the end of the book the neighbourhood people surprise Curtis with a party. This story is all about gratitude and expressing ones appreciation for people in our lives. 

After the girls and I read the book I decided to do things a little differently.  Instead of getting my girls to work on a craft or activity I opted to take on the craft myself. Sometimes I focus on asking my girls to show their gratitude, and I forget to show my own. This was a great opportunity for me to show my love and gratitude for my girls. I made each girl their own mailbox.

You will need
cereal box
knife
construction paper
glue stick
marker
1. To make the mailboxes, cut the cereal box in half.
make a mailbox

2. Cover the box with construction paper, using glue stick to glue it down.

cover with construction paper

3. To make the lid for the mailbox, write the word “mail”, or your child’s name, on one end of a sheet of construction paper.

write mail on the box

4. Glue the narrow end of the construction paper to the backside of the box

add the lid

5. Wrap the paper over the top, pressing to make an operable lid…with the word “mail” facing outward.

6. After completing the mailboxes write and “mail” a note of gratitude for your child.
thankyou note

They loved their notes and they loved the idea. The look of surprise was priceless. While I will often leave them little notes in their lunches and on their pillows, this mailbox made receiving the notes special. In fact, they both ran off and made their own gifts and notes for each other’s mailboxes.

child created

The best part of this activity was how I was able to lead by example. If I had simply asked my girls to make each other thank you notes, then they wouldn’t have really understood the impact of the thank you note. The bonus was that I got to express my appreciation and love for my girls. 

book club for kids

Do you have a favourite Kevin Henkes book? Have you ever created a post with an activity inspired by a Kevin Henkes book you read? Check out all of the activities happening at the other co-host blogs.

Toddler Approved, Mom to 2 Posh Lil Divas, Rainy Day Mum, Reading Confetti, Inspiration Laboratories, Play Dr. Mom, Mommy and Me Book Club, Kitchen Counter Chronicles, Two Big Two Little, Creative Connections for Kids, The Golden Gleam, Juggling with Kids, Taming the Goblin, Crafty Moms Share, Ready Set Read 2 Me, Famiglia and Seoul, The Good Long Road, The Educator’s Spin On It, Imagination Soup, 3 Dinosaurs, Royal Baloo, Being A ConsciousParent, No Twiddle Twaddle, Crayon Freckles, The Pleasantest Thing, Adventures in Reading with Kids, Smile, Play, Learn, Creekside Learning, and Teach Preschool

Please link up any posts that you have that feature the work of Kevin Henkes – we would love to see what you have been creating. Don’t forget to check out the Virtual Book Club for Kids Facebook page, where you can stay find out more about 

{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

Erin August 20, 2012 at 12:26 pm

This is so special! How easy it is for us to take our children for granted. I’m going to have to do this for my boys. Thank you for sharing!

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Kim Payne August 20, 2012 at 1:31 pm

This is a fantastic idea! So many times we forget how important a handwritten letter is. I love the mailbox! My three year old would love this!

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Carolyn August 21, 2012 at 7:21 pm

What a fun idea. You created such nice memories for your girls with this activity.

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