Why does my child not answer my questions?
Developing a meaningful relationship with someone by writing letters can be a difficult task, made more difficult when your questions don't get answered.
Having one unanswered question in a letter might simply mean the question was overlooked, but having your questions frequently go unanswered can be frustrating. We understand. We've even experienced that with our own sponsored children.
Some possible explanations include cultural differences, new staff assisting the children with writing, and the child not having your last letter available to refer to when writing a reply.
For a child in a mostly verbal culture the art of writing letters is often something studied but infrequently practiced. This is also true for children in Central and South America. Writing letters is out of the ordinary for them.
Something else that occurs is children take their sponsor letters home with them. Your child may not have your most recent letter with him when he writes back, particularly if he waits until the designated time during which all children in the center write their sponsors.
Often during this designated time, teachers will write a list of suggestions or letter samples on the board to help the kids with their letters. If your child left her letter at home, she may rely heavily on the suggestion(s) on the board. It's these suggestions that often make the child letters sound scripted or unoriginal. The children may copy the samples directly or follow the list word for word.
Another reason why your child may not be answering your questions is that the development center staff assisting with the reply may be new or or unfamiliar with how the letter-writing process at the center works.
Also, sometimes, but probably not often, your question may not be culturally appropriate, such as a question about politics. Or your question may not be understood by a child or development center worker.
You'll have the greatest chance of getting your questions answered if you keep them simple and short and you number and highlight each question. This calls attention to your questions.
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