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Teacher assignment 20 years: Students receive letters they wrote 20 years ago

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A teacher's assignment from 20 years showed up in mail boxes much to the surprise of many of his students. On April 8, Today reported that retired teacher, Bruce Farrer, has been tracking down the current addresses of thousands of his students, coming through on his end of the assignment bargain. His students were asked to write 10-page letters to themselves when they were just 14-years-old and once most of them were in their 30's, Mr. Farrer mailed said letters back.

"This is an assignment that they are anxious to get back. It's an assignment that makes them think at 14, what do I want to do and am I on the right path? I think the main thing is just the enjoyment of finding something old. Most of them have remembered writing the assignment, although a number of them told me they didn't remember the details they put in," Farrer told Today.

The teacher gave the assignment 20 years ago to this years group of students but he has been mailing out thousands of letters over the past several years and he plans on continuing to do so for many years to come. The last group of letters will be mailed out in 2026.

Mr. Farrer says that he tried everything to get correct addresses for his former students because he really wanted them all to have their letters back -- these letters that they wrote to their "future selves." Most of his students have received their letters and it's a nice little throwback to enjoy (depending on what they wrote, of course!) and to appreciate.

More on the teacher's assignment that spanned 20 years can be seen in the video above.

© Effie Orfanides 2014

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