In Good Company has the following advice in answer to the question about children and whether they should be writing Thank You cards for gifts they have received.

For children under age five, parents should send a card on the child’s behalf if gifts are not opened under

the eye of the giver or when a special grown-up sends  a present. (Incidentally, although it has become

commonplace, most parents are annoyed and most children very disappointed when gifts are not opened at the party.)  Preschoolers should already know how to say please and thank you when they receive a gift and at age four or five, they could also be included in the thank you card process by one of the following


Let the child pick out postcards with pre-written thank you messages, the child can write their initials and the parents can address and mail them.

Many very young children already know how to use basic computer programs and there are many children’s programs which offer card designs.  Children can help produce them and  parents can send. E-mail is not acceptable for personal thank you.

Send one of your child drawings with a note attached as a thank you. This is especially meaningful for grandparents or relative.

Let the child sign the back of a birthday photo which shows them with the thank you card recipients gift in hand

Write a note and let the child attach “thank you” or “smiley” stickers. Nobody expects these cards to be perfect, but the receiver will feel appreciated and the child will eventually grasp the idea of expressing gratitude