Have you discovered the joy of stamp collecting? Better yet, have you discovered the joy of collecting anything at all? Now, I’m not talking about the junk mail that finds its way onto each and every one of our kitchen tables. I’m talking about the collection of something meaningful, something that can offer knowledge and educate us, or simply be productive fun.
This month is your chance to get in the spirit, because October is none other than National Collector’s Month (…and Halloween of course)! Did you know that stamp collecting just so happens to be the most popular hobby in the world? Who knew? And just like me, I bet you’re asking, “Why stamps?” Well, they aren’t just little pictures on little sticky pieces of paper. Stamps represent different historical events, people, and places! It is the perfect stepping stone to learning as much or as little as you would like about the world.
This is the perfect hobby to start young or with children, because it gives kids the chance to ask questions, and it’s a fun way to start. It opens the door to so much history and information. It may be a stretch, but if you let it, collecting can be like visiting other parts of the world from your own living room. If you are looking for it, this is a wonderful experience to share with your children. You can choose any way to start, which give you the opportunity to choose an approach that will interst your child the most. For instance, you can focus the collection on a particular place or time period. Here are a few specific areas of collecting to consider:
- Topical (birds, castles, Disney, etc.)
- Precancels (US or foreign)
- Machins (Queen Elizabeth heads)
- Perfins (stamps with holes punched into them)
- Classics (stamps issued in the 19th century)
- and so many more!
Reading with your kids about other collectors can be another great way to get them interested in a hobby of their own. Sylvan Dell publishes a book called “Sort it Out!” by Barbara Mariconda. In this book, Packy the pack rat collects tons of things and has to sort them out. To him, all of the things he has collected are treasures in some way special to him. This book also includes interactive activites on sorting, categorizing, and classifying. Check it out, and maybe your child will find something awesome to collect too!