Supreme Court Justice John Roberts’ best advice for young people takes ‘exactly 10 minutes a week’

Supreme Court Justice John Roberts gave a New Hampshire boarding school graduation speech to 
Cardigan Mountain School students in June, and imparted some wisdom that he said could make a big difference in graduates’ lives.
“Once a week, you should write a note to someone,” Roberts told graduating ninth graders. “Not an email. A note on a piece of paper. It will take you exactly 10 minutes,” he continued.

Roberts — whose son attends the school — then dictated to students how to write such a note:

“Talk to an adult, let them tell you what a stamp is … I will help you, right now … It will say, ‘Dear [fill in the name of a teacher at Cardigan Mountain School].’ Say: ‘I have started at this new school. We are reading [blank] in English. Football or soccer practice is hard, but I’m enjoying it. Thank you for teaching me.’ Put it in an envelope, put a stamp on it and send it.”

Roberts, who had already told students to view themselves as equals to all of the people they meet, said that writing a letter of thanks will have impact on both their lives and on the lives of those who receive a note.

“It will mean a great deal to people who, for reasons most of us cannot contemplate, have dedicated themselves to teaching middle school boys,” he said. These people “will feel a little more special because you did, and they will think you are very special because of what you did. No one else is going to carry that dividend during your time at school.”

You can watch the entire speech below: