Sending an email


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Sending an email

Shows a middle aged man sitting in front of a laptop at home. He looks like he is happy, but concentrating. He may be reading an email.

What's coming up

In this activity, we will look at how to start writing an email, including where to write the main text and the person's email address that you want to send it to. You'll also learn about draft mail so you can write emails now but send later.

Start activity
Shows an example of Salma's Inbox an the start of a new email after the compose button has been selected

Writing an email

Now Salma has an email account, she wants to learn how to write an email. She decides to send an email to Maryam to check that her account works.

First, she needs to select the 'Compose' button. Some email providers might call this 'New' or even just include an icon (a small picture) that looks like a piece of paper and pen, but the button is usually found in the same place at the top left hand corner of the screen.

A new email example for that show's the 'To' field highlighted

Sending an email

When she's writing her message, the three most important boxes Salma will see are:

  1. To
  2. Subject
  3. Your message


This is where you write the email address of the person you're sending your message to . If Salma wants to write a message to Maryam she'll need to type in her email address,

A new email example for that show's the 'Subject' field highlighted


The subject box is where you'll need to type what the email is about. The person you're sending the email to will see the subject of the email before they open it, so it's a good idea to make it as clear as possible. This will help them decide whether or not they want to read the email.

A new email example for that highlights the empty field under the subject line where the body of the email will be typed

Your message

This is the big box underneath where it says ‘Subject'. This is where you will type your message. You should set it out like you're writing a letter, so that it's clear and easy to read.

When she's sending a message, Salma will have to think about who she's sending it to. If she's emailing Maryam, she'll be friendly and chatty, but when she is writing to her employer she'd be more formal.

Have a go

Let’s have a look at how to send an email.

On the next slide is a practice that includes some steps to try yourself. Select the Continue button below to begin and then follow the instructions on the right-hand side of the screen.

Have a go

Have a go

This is an interactive exercise that allows learners to practise sending an email.

This exercise has no soundtrack and in order to complete it, you need to enter a recipient's email address into the 'to' field, then enter a subject title in the email subject line and finally write a short message into the main text box of the email. This exercise aims to encourage confidence using the internet by practising a simple exercise in a simulated environment.

If a mistake is made during this exercise, there will be a prompt to ask you to try it again. If another mistake is made, the video will show you how to complete that section of the exercise.

The drafts folder

If Salma writes an email but decides she's not ready to send it yet, she can save it as a ‘draft' and send it later.

Most email providers will automatically save a copy of your email in your ‘Drafts' folder until you send it. You can find your drafts folder by clicking the word ‘Drafts' on the left hand side of your email screen.

Any messages you write will stay in your drafts folder until you send them.

Shows the navigation options for different folders within Salma's Inbox. The drafts folder has been highlighted.

The sent folder

When you've sent your email, it will move from the ‘Drafts' folder to the ‘Sent' folder.

You can get to your ‘Sent' folder by clicking the word ‘Sent' on the left side of your email screen.

In your ‘Sent' folder, you'll have a copy of each email you have sent.

Shows the navigation options for different folders within Salma's Inbox. The sent folder has been highlighted.
A cropped image of an email on screen with a 'Send message' button


Well done, you've come to the end of the activity 'Sending an email'.

You've helped Salma send a message and have seen what happens to her email after she has sent it.

In the next activity, 'Receiving and responding to an email' we'll find out how Salma reads and replies to messages she's been sent.