Mail is losing its importance more and more every day. Some families don’t even go to the mail box daily anymore because they simply don’t expect to find anything exciting there. It’s usually paper bills that have been paid online long ago, worthless brochures about outdoor lighting and Jacuzzi installation for $50,000, ads from gardening companies and window cleaning guys, and long-forgotten alma matter pleas for donations. It’s safe to say that we are all perfectly happy with the important stuff delivered by Amazon all day long right to our doorstep and with mail boxes slowly forgotten.
It wasn’t always like this. If we look back, we can definitely remember what our trips to the mail box used to be in childhood. It was usually exciting because everything under the sun could get delivered there and nothing came to the door. With lack of digital gadgets and smart devices, our gate to the world was TV, radio, and our mailbox. We often got hand written letters from out of state friends and family, Sunday papers and every day papers, the next instalment of Dr. Seuss books, food samples, and stamps.
We wanted our kids to experience something similar, view the mail box as an invite to adventure, and go to check it every day. We looked at various free mail options for kids and found a bunch of things. Word of caution though – most of those free things are not really free, you will be asked for a review and expected to do some form of social or social media promotion, a.k.a. nag your friends about those products. There are also plenty of “free” books and toys if you want to pay huge shipping and handling costs.
The reason why we started looking at all the free things we could get in the mail is simple free circus tickets that we got and kids absolutely loved. Garden Bros Circus runs a special where kids get free admission with a purchase of adult tickets. Tickets are free for kids 3-13 with this deal; all kids under 3 are always free. Various dates are available from Garden Bros Circus all over the country. The circus left a really good impression on our entire family and made us long for more free stuff that could make our days.
After some serious research, we found interesting things that are really worth looking into. You won’t have to pay for anything and your integrity will stay intact, yet your kids will definitely enjoy opening that mailbox even more if you’ll give a try to some of these. Granted, it’s not a free circus, but it’s the next best thing:
We have found some serious free inspiration here. It turns out the Government Printing Office offers a few wall posters for printing or delivery for kids telling all the steps needed to become a president of the US. Another one explains all 3 branches of government. All of that is free and takes about 22x34 inches of your wall. That’s some free inspiration and social science study at your fingertips!
Many companies offer free stickers for kids as a form of advertising. The problem with that is that they are usually available only once a month, it takes a while to find them, and kids don’t really need to learn anything more about another sugary breakfast cereal brand.
Peta is one place where you can get some free, but meaningful stickers about species that are on the verge of extinction. The stickers come on a postcard, but even if your little nature lovers will put them on walls, rest assured – they will do no damage to the paint.
- State tourism packets
Every state has them and you can request them for free. They will be exciting to receive and might help you plan a real mini-vacation to places that you haven’t visited before. You can even get such travel packet from a faraway state and create an imaginary vacation with your kids.
Most urban areas’ residents are eligible for free books once per month from Dolly Parton’s Imaginary Library for kids 0-5 years of age. The program was launched in 1995 and since supplied over 100 million books. You can also get activity sheets to go with the books. If there is no such program where you live, you can always start it.
Read Conmigo is another free English-Spanish program for bilingual reading for Pre-K to 5th grade kids. The books are electronic and paper in Florida, Texas, and California.
We, as adults, might not like them, but kids are a different story. Some catalogs are a work of art, for example Restoration Hardware’s. Trader Joe’s catalog is always fun and so is Zingerman’s Mail Order Catalog, featuring various food subscriptions. Those two can teach kids a lot about shopping, saving, and food. Finally, Burpee’s Garden and The J. Peterman catalogs can offer beautiful pictures and interesting reads.
- LEGO Life Magazine
If you also have some LEGO addicts in the house, consider signing up for this free magazine. Granted, be ready to buy a set or two of LEGO blocks after kids will nag and nag and nag, but overall this piece of mail is loads of fun.
You are getting free Legoland admission coupons in the Lego Life Magazine. If you are interested in more Legoland deals click here.
This step is like traveling back in time. You can help your kids start new friendships and strengthen the old ones with hand written letters. Suggest writing to grandparents, to friends, to favorite authors, Santa Claus, Disney characters, NASA astronauts, or simply strangers, though be careful with the last one. You can also write to celebrities and their kids if you follow them on social media.
- Nature boxes
This is the only not free program on this list, but it is well worth it. Nature Pal Exchange was started by bi-coastal home-schooled kids in 2015. The exchanges of nature finds help kids learn about our world through the eyes of other kids. Part of your fee goes to charities, so that fee is definitely well spent. Sign up and give it a try, let your kids be mesmerized by what others find in nature.
More Free Stuff for Kids:
- Free Peta Kids Guide to Helping Animals Magazine
- Free Welcome Box from Walmart. If you are interested how to get $10 off groceries from Walmart go here