NEHS and NHS trade letters with first graders for annual pen pal activity


Natalie Rebetsky

NEHS members receive their first letter from the first graders.

by Kelsey Ward, Editor

Members of the National English Honor Society and the National Honor Society are pen pals with first graders at Centerville Elementary School. The honor societies and the first graders will be exchanging four letters over the course of four weeks.

Now in the fourth year, 48 members of the NEHS and the NHS were assigned a first grade student from Mrs. Beverly Lloyd and Mrs. Michelle Packard’s classes. In the first letter, the students introduced themselves and told the first graders their three favorite things.

Some students added pictures or drawing of themselves. Other students, like Shannon Loughery and Sarah Hall, made their letters into masterpieces. 

Packard said that her students were “squealing with excitement” when they received their first letters. All the high school students were equally excited to read their letters from the first graders.

Many were heard saying “Aww, this is adorable” as they picked up their letters. It is easy to forget how accomplished juniors and seniors, were once mastering spelling. 

Young children are encouraged to learn to be fluent writers by using invented spelling, which emphasizes decoding by sounding out words and spelling as they sound.

“My pen pal’s name is Chloe. It was difficult to read her letter at first, but after a couple minutes I knew what she was saying. I loved receiving my letter from her; it made my day,” said Hannah Lemen, a member of both NHS and NEHS. 

The second letter focused on pets, family, and favorite activities. The topic of the third letter is “What I want to be when I grow up.” The last letter is “What I like most about school.”

Mr. Kevin Lloyd is the mailman, delivering letters from Kelsey Ward, NEHS Historian, and the two first grade teachers.

After all four letters are exchanged, the seniors and juniors will be taking a field trip in May to meet their pen pals.

“It was so awesome to get a letter from my pen pal, Sarina. It meant a lot more to me than I thought that it would. She even said that she was excited to meet me, so I am excited for the field trip,” said senior Jack Watsic.