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Teacher Quotes

A teacher affects eternity; he can never tell where his influence stops.
-- Henry Brooks Adams

* The true teacher defends his pupils against his own personal influence.
-- Amos Bronson Alcott

-To know how to suggest is the great art of teaching.
-- Henri Frederic Amiel

One of the biggest things that needs to change is the educational system. Universities are still teaching a system to students that destroys the biosphere.
-- Ray C. Anderson
My country is a country of teachers. It is therefore a country of peace. We discuss our successes and failures in complete freedom. Because our country is a country of teachers, we closed the army camps, and our children go about with books under their arms, not with rifles on their shoulders. We believe in dialogue, in agreement, in reaching a consensus.
-- Oscar Arias Sanchez

* Those that know, do. Those that understand, teach.
-- Aristotle

Education is an ornament in prosperity and refuge in adversity.
-- Aristotle

Those who educate children well are more to be honored than parents, for these only gave life, those the art of living well.
-- Aristotle


A schoolmaster should have an atmosphere of awe, and walk wonderingly, as if he was amazed at being himself.
-- Newton D. Baker

I believe that every human soul is teaching something to someone nearly every minute here in mortality.
- M. Russell Ballard

In teaching you cannot see the fruit of a day's work. It is invisible and remains so, maybe for twenty years.
-- Jacques Barzun

Teaching is not a lost art, but the regard for it is a lost tradition.
-- Jacques Barzun

A good teacher is a master of simplification and an enemy of simplism.
-- Louis A. Berman

Teaching is leaving a vestige of one self in the development of another. And surely the student is a bank where you can deposit your most precious treasures.
-- Eugene P. Bertin

* 'If you want to learn a thing, read that. If you want to know a thing, write that; if you want to master a thing, teach that.'
-- Yogi Bhajan

The best teacher is the one who suggests rather than dogmatizes, and inspires his listener with the wish to teach himself.
-- Edward Bulwer-Lytton

A teacher is one who makes himself progressively unnecessary.
-- Thomas Carruthers

If a child is to keep alive his inborn sense of wonder, he needs the companionship of at least one adult who can share it, rediscovering with him the joy, excitement and mystery of the world we live in.
-- Rachel Carson

What nobler employment, or more valuable to the state, than that of the man who instructs the rising generation.
-- Cicero

Don't try to fix the students, fix ourselves first. The good teacher makes the poor student good and the good student superior. When our students fail, we, as teachers, too, have failed.
-- Marva Collins

Acquire new knowledge whilst thinking over the old, and you may become a teacher of others.
- Confucius

The task of the excellent teacher is to stimulate "apparently ordinary" people to unusual effort. The tough problem is not in identifying winners: it is in making winners out of ordinary people.
-- K. Patricia Cross

“Any genuine teaching will result, if successful, in someone’s knowing how to bring about a better condition of things than existed earlier.”
-- John Dewey


The greatest good you can do for another is not just share your riches, but reveal to them their own.
-- Benjamin Disraeli

* "Social entrepreneurs are not content just to give a fish or teach how to fish. They will not rest until they have revolutionized the fishing industry."
-- Bill Drayton

* Teaching is the only major occupation of man for which we have not yet developed tools that make an average person capable of competence and performance. In teaching we rely on the "naturals," the ones who somehow know how to teach.
-- Peter F. Drucker

We now accept the fact that learning is a lifelong process of keeping abreast of change. And the most pressing task is to teach people how to learn.
-- Peter F. Drucker

* Children learn more from what you are than what you teach.
-- W. E. B. DuBois

Education is the transmission of civilization.
-- Will Durant

If you would thoroughly know anything, teach it to others.
-- Tryon Edwards

* It is the supreme art of the teacher to awaken joy in creative expression and knowledge.
-- Albert Einstein

* Our schoolbooks glorify war and conceal its horrors. They indoctrinate children with hatred. I would teach peace rather than war, love rather than hate."
-- Albert Einstein

“Teaching should be such that what is offered is perceived as a valuable gift and not as a hard duty.”
-- Albert Einstein

"We must inoculate our children against militarism, by educating them in the spirit of pacifism... Our schoolbooks glorify war and conceal its horrors. They indoctrinate children with hatred. I would teach peace rather than war, love rather than hate."
-- Albert Einstein


The great teacher is not the man who supplies the most facts, but the one in whose presence we become different people.
-- Ralph Waldo Emerson

The secret of education is respecting the pupils.
-- Ralph Waldo Emerson

“Be an opener of doors for such as come after thee.”
-- Ralph Waldo Emerson

Be careful to leave your sons well instructed rather than rich, for the hopes of the instructed are better than the wealth of the ignorant.
-- Epictetus

Experience is a dear teacher, but fools will learn at no other.
-- Benjamin Franklin

I cannot be a teacher without exposing who I am.
Paulo Freire

"The teacher is no longer merely the-one-who-teaches, but one who is him/herself taught in dialogue with the students, who in turn while being taught also teach. They become jointly responsible for a process in which all grow."
-- Paulo Freire

When we live our lives with the authenticity demanded by the practice of teaching that is also learning and learning that is also teaching, we are participating in a total experience…. In this experience the beautiful, the decent, and the serious form a circle with hands joined."
-- Paulo Freire

"Although the teachers or the students are not the same, the person in charge of education is being formed or re-formed as he/she teaches, and the person who is being taught forms him/herself in the process. …There is, in fact, no teaching without learning."
-- Paulo Freire

"To teach is part of the very fabric of learning."
-- Paulo Freire

"… there is no valid teaching from which there does not emerge something learned and through which the learner does not become capable of recreating and remaking what has been taught."
-- Paulo Freire

You cannot teach a man anything; you can only help him find it within himself.
-- Galielo Galilei

A teacher is a compass that activates the magnets of curiosity, knowledge, and wisdom in the pupils.
-- Eve Garrison

The teacher who is indeed wise does not bid you to enter the house of his wisdom but rather leads you to the threshold of your mind.
-- Kahlil Gibran

Teachers are expected to reach unattainable goals with inadequate tools. The miracle is that at times they accomplish this impossible task.
-- Haim G. Ginott

Good teaching is one-fourth preparation and three-fourths theater.
--Gail Godwin

Seldom was any knowledge given to keep, but to impart; the grace of this rich jewel is lost in concealment.
-- Bishop Hall

The object of teaching a child is to enable him to get along without his teacher.
-- Elbert Hubbard

Education and the process of educating is a total integral, contextual situation which includes students, teachers, parents, administration and environment.
-- Jean Huston

'It must be remembered that the purpose of education is not to fill the minds of students with facts... it is to teach them to think, if that is possible, and always to think for themselves.'
-- Robert Maynard Hutchins

He that teaches us anything which we knew not before is undoubtedly to be reverenced as a master.
-- Samuel Johnson

To teach is to learn twice.
-- Joseph Joubert

One looks back with appreciation to the brilliant teachers, but with gratitude to those who touched our human feelings. The curriculum is so much necessary raw material, but warmth is the vital element for the growing plant and for the soul of the child.
-- Carl Jung

A child miseducated is a child lost.
-- John F. Kennedy

Modern cynics and skeptics... see no harm in paying those to whom they entrust the minds of their children a smaller wage than is paid to those to whom they entrust the care of their plumbing.
-- John F. Kennedy

“I write books to change the world. Perhaps I can only change one little piece of that world. But if I can empower teachers and good citizens to give these children, who are the poorest of the poor, the same opportunity we give our own kids, then I'll feel my life has been worth it.”
-- Jonathan Kozol


Poverty is a weapon of mass destruction. Joblessness is a weapon of mass destruction, homelessness, a weapon of mass destruction... racism, a weapon of mass destruction, fear, a weapon of mass destruction. We must disarm these weapons and renew our commitment to quality public schools and dedicated teachers and good housing and quality health care and decent jobs and stronger neighborhoods.
-- Dennis Kucinich

Experience is the worst teacher; it gives the test before presenting the lesson.
- Vernon Law

The important thing is not so much that every child should be taught, as that every child should be given the wish to learn.
-- John Lubbock

* One of the marks of a great teacher lies not only in an ability to impart knowledge but also in knowing when to encourage a student to go off on his own.
-- Yo-Yo Ma

A teacher who is attempting to teach without inspiring the pupil with a desire to learn is hammering on cold iron.
-- Horace Mann

None of us got where we are solely by pulling ourselves up by our bootstraps. We got here because somebody - a parent, a teacher, an Ivy League crony or a few nuns - bent down and helped us pick up our boots.
-- Thurgood Marshall

"I touch the future. I teach."
- Christa McAuliffe.

What the teacher is, is more important than what he teaches.
-- Karl Menninger

“The greatest sign of success for a teacher... is to be able to say, "The children are now working as if I did not exist."”
Maria Montessori

Your best teacher is your last mistake.
-- Ralph Nader

The good teacher discovers the natural gifts of his pupils and liberates them.
-- Stephen Neil

A master can tell you what he expects of you. A teacher, though, awakens your own expectations.
-- Patricia Neal

The dream begins with a teacher who believes in you, who tugs and pushes and leads you to the next plateau, sometimes poking you with a sharp stick called "truth."
-- Dan Rather

I believe that the testing of the student's achievements in order to see if he meets some criterion held by the teacher, is directly contrary to the implications of therapy for significant learning.
- Carl Rogers


“More important than the curriculum is the question of the methods of teaching and the spirit in which the teaching is given”
-- Bertrand Russell

“No man can be a good teacher unless he has feelings of warm affection toward his pupils and a genuine desire to impart to them what he believes to be of value.”
-- Bertrand Russell

Imparting education not only enlightens the receiver, but also broadens the giver - the teachers, the parents, the friends.
-- Amartya Sen


To me the sole hope of human salvation lies in teaching.
-- George Bernard Shaw

“Experience fails to teach where there is no desire to learn.”
-- George Bernard Shaw

"Teaching kids to count is fine, but teaching them what counts is best."
- Bob Talbert

When you teach your son, you teach your son's son.
-- The Talmud

It’s what you learn after you know it all that counts.
-- Harry S. Truman

The art of teaching is the art of assisting discovery.
-- Mark Van Doren

The teacher that I was for decades, and that I still am in a certain way, wondered what was meant by the word education. I was truly dumbfounded at the very thought of dealing with such an essential and extensive subject.
-- Abdoulaye Wade

The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires.
-- William Arthur Ward

The most important part of teaching is to teach what it is to know.
-- Simone Weil

I saw as a teacher how, if you take that spark of learning that those children have, and you ignite it, you can take a child from any background to a lifetime of creativity and accomplishment.
-- Paul Wellstone

If a teacher does not involve himself, his values, his commitments, in the course of discussion, why should the students?
-- Paul Wellstone

“Teaching is the greatest act of optimism”
-- Colleen Wilcox

Mama was my greatest teacher, a teacher of compassion, love and fearlessness. If love is sweet as a flower, then my mother is that sweet flower of love.
-- Stevie Wonder

One good teacher in a lifetime may sometimes change a delinquent into a solid citizen.
-- Philip Wylie


Teacher's Day - October 5

See Also Eduction & Literacy Quotes

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