Welcome! We’re happy to have a very special Guest today to kick off the holiday season. Amanda Major of mouzekateerz.com is a Disney vacationer, award winning amateur photographer and high school teacher by profession. She loves to share her Disney photographs and sharpen her grammar skills by writing about her travel experiences. You can find also Amanda’s WDW photographs here on facebook.
Every photo has a story.
When you find yourself in need of a break from the Walt Disney World theme park holiday crowds, or you would just like to do some Christmas shopping, look no further than Downtown Disney. With fabulous stores like Once Upon a Toy, World of Disney, and Disney’s Days of Christmas, the Downtown Disney area offers up a holiday feast for the eyes, ears and wallet.
There are 365 days a year when Florida residents and WDW guests can shop for holiday merchandise at the Disney’s Days of Christmas shop. But, only during the holiday season will you see 150 tractor-trailer truckloads worth of decorations spread out across 24 resorts, four theme parks, Downtown Disney and other locations.
While you’re doing your Downtown Disney shopping, be sure to see some of the festivities held during the “Festival of the Seasons” from now until January 8. The Festival of the Seasons is a showcase of holiday carolers, plus festive and traditional songs performed by jazz, pop and Latin musical entertainment. You may also catch a glimpse of costumed stilt walkers, street performers, and at certain times, a holiday dance party with a deejay. You can grab a photo with Santa Claus in person at Santa’s Chalet until Dec 24th. Now would also be the perfect time to drop off your letter to Santa.
Writing letters to Santa Claus has been a Christmas tradition for children for longer than most of us can remember. Letters to Santa normally contain a wish list of toys and reports of good behavior. Some social scientists have found that boys and girls write different types of Santa letters. Girls generally write longer letters, and they seem to express the nature of the Christmas season more in their letters than boys do. Girls also request gifts for other people more often than boys.
Many postal services allow children to physically mail their letters to Santa Claus. In our advanced technological world, online services now offer websites to type up your letter to Santa and send it instantly to the North Pole. Writing letters to Santa Claus has the educational benefits of promoting literacy, computer literacy and e-mail literacy. A letter to Santa is often a child’s first experience of correspondence. Whether written with help or on their own, children can learn about the structure of a letter, salutations and the use of address and postal codes.
Here are three quick writing tips for your letter to Santa:
• A salutation is a greeting used in a letter or an email. You’ll start off with a salutation saying, “Dear Santa,” with capital letters beginning both words, followed by a comma to separate your salutation from the body of your letter.
• A proper noun is a type of noun used to identify a specific person, place or thing. In English and most other languages that use the Latin alphabet, proper nouns are usually capitalized. If you ask for “some toys,” you won’t need to use a capital letter for toys. But if you ask for a specific doll, you need a capitol letter for the specific noun, which looks like this, “I’d really like a Mickey Mouse doll.” Mickey Mouse, being a specific, branded persona, is a proper noun that needs capitalization.
• If you don’t list your requested items in a column going down the page, your other option is to present your list in sentence form. In formal writing, such as letters, when you have more than two items in a sentence, you’ll need at least two commas to separate your items.* An example of that looks like this, “I would like a train set, a bike for my brother, and a new dress for Granny Jones.” Santa likes it when we think about other people in our letters.
You can access some downloadable, printable “Dear Santa” stationary at Classified Mom.
I hope you have a great time shopping at Downtown Disney, and don’t forget to drop off your Christmas wish list letter to Santa Claus at Santa’s Chalet. He’ll be there until December 24th. Until then, be good, because Santa is always watching!
If you cannot make it to the Downtown Disney area this holiday season, Macy’s Department Stores has a wonderful offer! In association with the animated special, “Yes, Virginia,” airing on CBS December 9, 2011, at 9PM ET, Macy’s is inviting children to mail their letters to Santa in mailboxes set up at the department stores. For every letter received, Macy’s will donate $1 to the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Nearly 300,000 letters have already been received! Let’s help achieve the $1 million goal! Click the image below for details.
SCHOOL SUBJECT: Language Arts
SKILL LEVEL: Elementary
*Editor’s Note: Per Associated Press guidelines for periodicals, magazines (both print and online), weblogs, news media and other such outlets, it is customary to omit the final comma in a series of items listed in a sentence unless it is necessary for sentence clarity. However, in school instruction for formal writing, such as letters, research papers or business documents, or when teaching proper sentence structure, the final comma should appear before the conjunction.
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