Pen-Pal Exchange

By participating in the Every Voice Matters Pen-Pal Exchange, students will not only develop their writing skills but also gain valuable insights into different cultures, perspectives, and experiences. This activity promotes empathy, understanding, and appreciation for the diverse voices within our global community. Here are tips to help you plan your pen-pal exchange!

Introduction

Introduce the concept of Inclusive Schools Week and the theme “Every Voice Matters” to the students.

Explain the pen-pal activity as an opportunity for students to connect with peers from different countries or cultures.

Partner Matching

Collaborate with organizations or educational platforms that facilitate international school partnerships and pen-pal exchanges. Examples include ePals, PenPal Schools, and GlobalPenfriends.com. Work with these organizations to match your students with pen-pals from schools in different countries or cultural backgrounds.

Letter Writing

Provide guidelines for writing letters that promote inclusivity, respect, and cultural understanding. Encourage students to share information about their own lives, interests, and experiences while also asking questions to learn about their pen-pals’ cultures and perspectives. Emphasize the importance of active listening and empathy in understanding and appreciating the differences and similarities between themselves and their pen-pals.

Exchange and Communication

Facilitate the exchange of letters between the students and their pen-pals, either through traditional mail or digital communication platforms. Encourage students to maintain respectful and ongoing communication with their pen-pals, fostering a sense of connection and friendship across borders.

Reflection and Sharing

Throughout Inclusive Schools Week, provide opportunities for students to reflect on their experiences with the pen-pal exchange. Encourage them to share insights, challenges, and moments of connection with their classmates. Consider organizing virtual or in-person events where students can share letters, photos, and stories from their pen-pal exchanges with the school community.

Continued Engagement

Encourage students to continue their pen-pal relationships beyond Inclusive Schools Week, fostering long-term connections and ongoing cultural exchange opportunities. Provide support and resources for teachers to integrate the pen-pal exchange into their curriculum, incorporating topics such as global citizenship, diversity, and inclusion.

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