Elf On The Shelf Letter – Arrival and Goodbye!

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Help your elf make a special appearance this year with an Elf On The Shelf letter for their arrival, and when they say goodbye! You’ll find everything you need to introduce your magical elf as well as send them back to the North Pole on Christmas Eve.

Free printable Elf On The Shelf letters.

Free printable Elf On The Shelf letters

Elf On The Shelf is a fun tradition that was started in 2005 by a mother and daughter team who published the book along with a special scout elf. It’s popularity seemed to grow overnight and hasn’t slowed down since! You can even get fun accessories for your elf, there are so many ways to have fun with them!

How does Elf On The Shelf work?

The concept is pretty magical! And if you read the book that comes with the elf it will help guide you, but i’ll also briefly explain below!


Starting Elf On The Shelf

  1. You and your child will want to first read the book that comes with the elf, explaining how the elf works and includes the rules that should be followed.
  2. There are lots of rules to the elf, the biggest one is of course no touching. Touching the elf could make him lose his magic. But don’t worry, he can be “recharged” with a sprinkle of cinnamon or a special Christmas blessing.
  3. After reading the book you’ll want to secretly plan for when your elf first visits the kids! This can be any day you choose, just remember that once the elf visits you have to do it every day.

The Elf On The Shelf first visit

  1. On the day of his first visit include the welcome letter below as it quickly explains the rules in a fun rhyme!
  2. Next you’ll want to name your new elf, this is important because it’s what the elf will forever be called. You can go with something simple like “Richard” or more elaborate like “Princess Pancake Face” (personal favorite), leave it up to the kids and they’ll think of something great!
  3. The elf is one of Santa’s scouts, so he’ll report back to Santa all his findings (good and bad) during the weeks leading up to Christmas.
  4. Every night the elf leaves to “report to Santa” which means you’ve got to move him to a new spot! That way, each morning, the children and search for him and often find him up to no good or with a fun activity like these notes and jokes.

The Elf On The Shelf goodbye

  1. Print out the goodbye letter below for a fun rhyme the kids will enjoy and include it with your elf.
  2. On Christmas Eve, the elf’s mission is complete, and it returns to the North Pole with Santa Claus. It doesn’t return until the next holiday season.

So, the short of it is you get a magical elf and each day he visits your family! He cannot be touched and must move every day because he “left” the night before to report to Santa at the North Pole.

Elves can get into mischief (check Pinterest for some fun ideas), have scavenger hunts, bring gifts and whatever else you want to do with them!



Love this printable? Check out all our other Christmas printables here!

What’s Included:

  • 8.5×11 Elf On The Shelf arrival letter
  • 8.5×11 Elf On The Shelf i’m back letter
  • 8.5×11 Elf On The Shelf goodbye letter

Supplies Needed:

Below are some supplies I recommend to get the best out of your new printable!

Free printable Elf On The Shelf letters.

Elf On The Shelf letter templates

The Elf On The Shelf welcome letter

The welcome letter is a special introduction to your friendly elf and briefly covers the rules and guidelines on what’s going to happen in a short, fun rhyme! Perfect to get the little ones on board and play into the magic of the elf.

The Elf On The Shelf Goodbye letter

The goodbye letter is a fun send off telling the kids where the elf is going (spoiler, it’s the North Pole) and how much fun he had while visiting and playing! And, of course, this one rhymes also!

The Elf On The Shelf I’m Back letter

Did your kids have an elf last year? No worries! I’ve included an “I’m Back” letter for those who’ve already included an elf in their traditions.

As an added ote, I wrote all the rhymes myself, so you can totally blame me if they’re cheesy haha.

Pro Tip: TIP Laminate the letters if you want to save them for memories, sticky fingers can often get ahold of them!

Get the FREE Elf On The Shelf letters

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Download your printable Elf letters!

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Free printable Elf On The Shelf letters pin.
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