The traditional art of letter writing is fast dying out among today’s technologically savvy children who prefer emails and text messages to communicate, a new survey has revealed.

According to the survey, one in 10 children between the ages of seven and 14 has never written a letter in their life while one in four youngsters admit they have not written one letter in the past year.

In fact, youngsters admitted that their preferred method of communication is to write an email or post a message on a social networking website like Facebook or Orkut.

The poll of 1,188 youngsters, commissioned by charity World Vision for its National Letter Writing Day, also found children are less likely to write letters as they get older.

Only about eight per cent of 14-year-olds said they had written a letter in the previous week, compared with more than a quarter of seven-year-olds, British tabloid the ‘Daily Express’ reported.

However, there was some good news. Manners are not dying out with 70 per cent of youngsters saying they would write a note to say thank you to someone.

The survey has also revealed that many youngsters are leaving primary school unable to set out a letter - almost half of 11-year-olds were unsure of the right layout.

Child education expert Sue Palmer said the demise of the art of letter writing was a worrying trend.

She said, “If children do not write or receive letters they miss out on key developmental benefits. Handwritten letters are much more personal than electronic communication.”

“By going to the trouble of physically committing words to paper, the writer shows their investment of time and effort in a relationship. That’s why we tend to hang on to personal letters as keepsakes.” she added.

RELATED NEWS

Being a spelling bee pays offMay 12, 2010