A high school psychology class is completing a project of writing one letter of appreciation each month. The project is called “Write it Forward.

The class is tracking the responses to see where our letters will end up. Click the following link for updates.


In our project, we ask the recipients to send us an email, here are the responses from the 1st month.

Sept 14

I received a letter, and it was the most heartfelt letter I’ve ever read. I’ve received letters before but not the way he wrote his letter. To be honest I cried, and he knows that but that’s not important lol. I can’t wait to write one to my best friend, finally an excuse to write a handwritten letter to someone other than my boyfriend hahaha.

Great assignment 🙂

Student Grade 11

Sept 14


I  just received a letter of appreciation from my sweet niece.

I was so stunned of all the people in her life that could have picked she chose me. What she does not know is she has made a difference in my life too. I feel blessed and privileged to have her in my life. I would like to send the letter back to her but that is against the rules. Thanks to her and to you, her teacher, for having your students think about writing and not texting/emailing their feelings.



Wakefield, MA

Sept 18

I just received the “write it forward” letter from L.C. and I love this idea of writing a letter to someone who is very important to you. I will pass it on to someone I feel is important to me also, I hope you get great feedback from this.

Thank you,

Sept 19

I’m [student’s] Aunt and I was brought to tears reading my letter.  She also made me smile and laugh out loud by the end of the letter. I think this is a wonderful project because we always don’t tell the ones that mean the most to us how much they mean to us when we have the chance.

I’m looking forward to sending out my letter and want to send more than one so I may do it once a month also.

Thanks for taking the time to do such a wonderful project with the students and getting them to slow down in the busy world they’re in and take the time to write a letter and put down their cell phones.

I’ve already posted about my experience online encouraging others to do the same.Thank you for such a thoughtful and impactful project.

Quincy, MA

Sept 20

Just wanted to let you know that I received a letter of appreciation in the mail yesterday (Sept 18th) and what a nice surprise it was. I think it’s a great idea, especially since in these times of electronic everything most kids have probably never had to sit down and take the time to write a letter to anyone! Am “writing it forward” today. Thanks for making an ordinary day a little nicer.


I have successfully received J.W.’s letter of appreciation. It really made my day to get such a thoughtful letter. Thank you.

September 23


I am not sure what information you need about the letter I received from A.K.. I got it on Wednesday, September 18 after my 18th Back To School Night with my new first grade parents. After the world’s longest day and evening at school in a calendar year that has been filled with professional and personal challenges, I arrived home to find a letter in my mailbox. Always there are bills, hardly ever are there letters, so you can imagine my surprise when I saw what it was.

A. is my much loved only niece, and while I feel like I know her well, her letter caught me off guard. We often say we love each other, but we do not often say why. I had no idea what she noticed about me, how she appreciated me, and she has no idea the impact her letter had on me. At first I burst into tears and then I reread it and I felt like I had been handed this this giant gift- a glimpse into her thinking, a glimpse at how much it matters that we say the things we need to say and a glimmer of what should come ahead…opportunities to let others know their impact on me.

Thank you! In a world that can feel cold and lonely and isolating, this is a wonderful project reminding us of our connections to others and our mandate to share our gratitude for them with them. This is a great lesson for your young students and us old ones, too!


Wellesley, MA

Hi class!

I really loved getting this letter!  It was such a nice surprise from my niece, A.!  She wrote such thoughtful and heart warming letter.  Thanks, A.!

I had a hard time coming up with just one person to write to, there were so many people that popped into my head.  As a result, I think I will try to write more letters and cards, in the future.

I think this is a wonderful assignment.  I am a 4th grade teacher and I’m going to try to modify this assignment for my students.

Thank you!

Walpole, MA

Sept 24

A quick note to let you know that I received the letter from my nephew, G.B.. It’s a very cool idea for an assignment. People today probably do not know how to compose a proper letter.

I was actually touched by what G. said to me in it. It’s good to know that he’s listening and not just yessing me to death as some kids do.

What a terrific idea!  Just the nudge one might need to tell someone who has meant so much to you how they have favorably impacted your life.   Also, nice to let someone know they’ve made a difference in this otherwise troubled world.  It made my day to receive such an unexpected and very much appreciated letter.

Thank you.

Sunset Beach, NC

September 25

Hello Psychology class,

I received an appreciation letter from [P.M.] last week and wrote my own letter tonight.  In the week that I have been thinking about (or procrastinating, depending on how you look at it) writing my own letter, I have been noticing how many times I have seen references to showing gratitude or appreciation, and how the act of doing that can make you happy.

I saw it this week in the following places:

This link was put up by a friend on Facebook. Number 7 on the list of ways to be happy is to show gratitude (apparently flat abs and all the other things we see on magazine covers might not make us happy….)

In another posting there was a link to this video called “The Science of Happiness

The subjects in this study didn’t just have to write letters, they had to make the phone call! Also – I don’t know where I saw it originally, but I had saved it as a PDF.  It is attached to this e-mail.

10 Simple Things You Can Do Today That Will Make You Happier, Backed By Science

The 10th thing on the list is showing gratitude.  You don’t even have to tell another person, even writing down in a journal what you are grateful for can increase your happiness.

I think that what this all comes down to is choosing to focus on the positive things in your life instead of the negative things.  Everyone has their share of both things, but if we focus on the positive, and appreciate the things that are good, we can have a better outlook on life.

I like the quote below. There is some question as to whether it was spoken by Abe Lincoln or not, but either way I think it sums it up.

“People are just as happy as they make up their minds to be.”

Focus on the positive!

Good luck with your project.  I hope my niece can share the results with me.


PS – The letter made me feel happy, writing my own letter made me feel happy too.  Anticipating that the person I wrote to would feel happy when she read my letter, made me feel even happier.


Sept 26

Today in the mail I received a hand-written letter from a dear friend. I opened it immediately

because it was a rarity. My mail is often a bill or two, a magazine (Today TV Guide came – with A cover article about Homeland.), catalogs and the begging letters. As you can imagine a note of any kind is a treat. I save all my notes, invitations, and cards in hat boxes and reread them.

I think this project is wonderful. I am from an earlier generation and use electronic communication, but I am still more comfortable getting out my favorite pen and stationery and writing a note. You can do it early in the morning or late at night.  A consistent stocking and Easter basket gift is a book of stamps for each of my children and their spouses. I wish they took up more room.

A written note is cherished and read and reread. It is a wonderful lesson to teach. No note is more important than a Thank you note. I know people spend a lot of time choosing a gift, wrapping it and presenting it. It is fitting to be thanked for it. I love it when I get a photo of where the gift is being used or on the person it was bought for.

I am of a generation that writes and I understand the reasoning of it but I would rather have used pen and stationery and written and mailed this.

Norwood, MA

Check back to see where we go. This month 2 letters are on there way to foreign countries.

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