Arrange for the school's postman woman to give a talk about their job.
Get children to draw, write and address a postcard "from the local area" to a favourite soft toy at home. Discuss what the postcard should show. Use "the journey of a letter" as a focus for display work.
Build activities about faxes and email (QCA Unit 18, "Connecting ourselves to the world") into your lesson planning. Try the activities and links in Focus on Communications, which has a good section on the digital divide.
Use the postal service as an example of economic activity. Investigate postcodes: why do we need them? How do they work? What are they used for? www.royalmail.comportalrmhome and search for "postcodes" and "postcodes and address explained". See the postcode information sheet at www.postalheritage. org.uk Map the distribution of post boxes in your area. What is their catchment area? Are some areas better served than others? Should any post boxes be relocated?
Visit the atlas of cyberspace, "geographic" section. Choose two maps and describe and explain what they tell us about global communication.
Base an enquiry on the issue of local post office closures. Why are they happening? On what scale? Is it a rural or urban issue, or both? What is likely to happen in the future? A web search on "local post office closures" will get students started, and local materials should be readily available.