Several months ago my mom brought over a bin of Beanie Babies and told me she thought they could be donated to the troops. I, of course, had no idea how to go about this. So I did nothing.
This week I decided to go through them and keep the ones that meant the most to me and donate some to my toddler classroom. After that I still had dozens left! So I begrudgingly started a Google search to find out the best way to donate them, and I’m glad I did! I found an organization called Operation Gratitude! As I was printing out the donation form I saw that donations of letters to our military personnel are always needed. And then I had a great idea! I’d have my students “write” letters!
I wrote a quick one or two lines of thanks on cardstock ahead of time and then let the kids get creative with stickers and crayons.
Explaining the activity to toddlers was a bit challenging, but they generally understood when I said we were, “thanking soldiers for keeping us safe.” (Yes, I know soldier is specific to the army, but they’re 2 year olds, okay? 😉) Several of the kids got really into it and asked to write multiple letters! It was awesome to see their excitement!
This would be a great activity to go along with National Holidays such as Veteran’s Day and Memorial Day, but I also think it is important to thank our service members on other days of the year as well!
In the end we had a big pile of wonderful letters to donate to Operation Gratitude!