Through our partnership with the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE), National English Honor Society fully supported and promoted NCTE’s month-long recognition of the National Day on Writing. We have encouraged you, our members, to host events this month in celebration of the #WhyIWrite movement. Now that October is at an end, please share with us stories and photos of how your chapter celebrated. Please send all content to Dave Wendelin so that we may share your success with your fellow NEHS members!
For the second year, Saint Mary’s Hall (SMH) celebrated the National Council of Teachers of English‘s National Day on Writing, and our 2019 theme was “Letters: Send Your Voice.” On October 19 all Saint Mary’s Hall K-12 students attended the National Day on Writing celebration during their English classes, participating in a variety of letter-writing activities. For instance, there were two booths, “Letters for Change” and “Letters to Soldiers,” where students were encouraged to write letters to Texas congress-people, along with letters of gratitude to veterans. Because our chapter mainly consists of senior students, many of whom will be able to vote in the upcoming midterm elections for the first time, members enjoyed writing letters to various political leaders. The seniors in our chapter, specifically, have aided in helping younger students become aware of the pertinence in expressing one’s voice. SMH students chose to send letters for political change to anyone from First Lady Melania Trump, President Donald Trump, Senator Cruz, to even our local mayor—Mayor Ron Nirenberg. In the Letters to Soldiers booth, one “Form I” student directed his letter to a “Brave American,” thanking a soldier for “serving our country” and “keeping us free.” Meanwhile, middle and upper school students could write letters to either deployed or hospitalized veterans. These letters in particular inspired students to exercise empathy and compassion for our nation’s veterans, with one 7th grade student writing to a hospitalized veteran, “You must miss your family and friends but just think how proud they are of you, just like I am.” On the National Day on Writing, we wanted students to experience the power of letters and how easily they can send their voices out into the world. With “Letters: Send Your Voice,” students felt they were actively participating in society, whether it be writing to a politician or a veteran, promoting what our NEHS chapter believes lies at the heart of the English language—the power of the individual.
Charles Dickens Chapter, Chapter President
Saint Mary’s Hall, San Antonio, TX