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Gifts of Ideas for Teachers
By Richh Meiss • Thursday, May 29, 2008

Over the years, I have been inspired by the wisdom offered to all those who teach and influence in our education system.  I have kept a collection of their quotes and words. These people have included presidents, theologians, professors, historians, authors, poets, teachers, statesmen, philosophers and clergy.   Whether a teacher by profession or by choice, remember this great quote by one of my favorite authors, Anonymous:
“Your students may forget what you said but they will never forget how you made them feel.”
Adams, Henry – Historian, grandson of the American President John Quincy Adams
“A teacher affects eternity; he can never tell where his influence stops.”
Adams, James Truslow – American writer and historian
“There are two educations. One should teach us how to make a living
and the other how to live.”
Alcott, Bronson – American teacher and writer
“A good book is opened with expectation and closed with profit.”
Amiel, Henri Frederic – Swiss philosopher
“The greatest artist is the simplifier.”
Aristotle – Greek philosopher
“The educated differ from the uneducated as much as the living from the dead.”
Ashton-Warner, Sylvia – Novelist, educational pioneer
“The truth is that I am enslaved… in one vast love affair with 70 children. I see the mind of the 5-year old as a volcano with two vents: 
destructiveness and creativeness.”
Astor, Nancy – Member of Parliament, British House of Commons
“Real education should educate us out of self into something far finer –
Into selflessness which links us with all humanity.”
Bagehot, Walter – British journalist and businessman
“Perhaps the most valuable result of education is the ability to make
yourself do the thing you have to do, when it ought to be done,
whether you like it or not.”
Barrie, Sir James M. – Scottish novelist
“Nothing is really work unless you would rather be doing something else.”
Barzun, Jacques – French born American historian
“The elementary school must assume as its sublime and most solemn responsibility the task of teaching every child in it to read. Any school
that does not accomplish this has failed.”
Beecher, Henry Ward – American clergyman
“Books are not made for furniture, but there is nothing else that so beautifully furnishes a house.”
Boetcker. William J.H. – American religious leaders
“The difficulties and struggles of today are but the price we must pay
for the accomplishments and victories of tomorrow.”
Bok, Derek – Former President of Harvard University, lawyer
“If you think education is expensive, try ignorance.”
Brodie, Peter – Educator and author
‘What is important – what lasts – in another language is not what is said but what is written. For the essence of an age, we look to its poetry and its prose, not its talk shows.”
Buchan, John – Governor General of Canada, Scottish novelist
“To live for a time close to great minds is the best kind of educaion.”
Camus, Albert – French-Algerian author and philosopher
“Life is the sum of all your choices.”
Carlyle, Thomas – Scottish essayist and historian
“Books are friends that never fail. The best effect of any book is that it excites the reader to self-activity.”
Chung, Kuan –  Author, educator
“If you plan for a year, plant a seed. If for ten years, plant a tree. If for a hundred years, teach the people. When you sow a seed once, you will’ reap a single harvest. When you teach the people, you will reap a hundred harvests.”
Churchill, Sir Winston – Prime Minister of the United Kingdom
“In an absorbing vocation, working hours are never long enough. Each day is a holiday, and ordinary holidays are grudged as enforced interruptions.”
Clarke, John Henrik – Pan-Africanist, author, teacher, poet
“A good teacher, like a good entertainer, first must hold his audience’s attention. Then he can teach the lesson.”
Confucius – Chinese thinker and philosopher
“The essence of knowledge is, having it, to use it.”
Coppin, Fanny Jackson – African American educator and missionary
“Happy are the children whose parents know the importance of teaching them to love and care for books while they are young.
Many a child called dull would advance rapidly under a patient, wise and skillful teacher, and the teacher should be as conscientious in the endeavor to improve himself as he is to improve the child.
Whenever a pupil has spoken disrespectfully to a teacher and the teacher can say with truth, “Do I not always speak politely to you?” the case is won without any more argument. Love wins when everything else will fail.”
Cosby, Bill – African American entertainer
“If you drop out, you miss out.”
Dana, John Cotton – American librarian and museum director
“Who dares to teach must never cease to learn.”
Disney, Walt –  Academy award winner film producer, entrepreneur, founder of Walt Disney World productions
“There is more treasure in books than in all the pirate’s loot on Treasure Island.” 
Disraeli, Benjamin – British Prime Minister
“Upon the education of the people of this country the fate of this country depends.”
Dreikurs, Rudolf – American psychiatrist and educator
“Every misbehaving child is discouraged and needs continuous encouragement, just as a plant needs water and sunshine.”
Dumas, Alexandre – French writer, author and playwright
“One’s work may be finished some day, but one’s education, never.”
Edwards, Harry – African American sociologist
“Education takes place in the combination of the home, the community, the school, and the receptive mind.”
Einstein, Albert – German-born theoretical physicist
“The purpose of education is to awaken joy in creative expression and knowledge.”
Emerson, Ralph Waldo – American essayist, author, poet
A great teacher makes hard things easy. The reward of a thing well done is to have done it.”
Evangelist, Sister RSM – Missionary
“I have one rule – attention. They give me theirs, and I give them mine.”
Feather, William – American publisher and author
“An education isn’t how much you have committed to memory. It’s knowing where to go to find out what you need to know, and it’s knowing how to use the information you get.”
Fischer, John – Educator and writer
“We must see that every child has equal opportunity, not to become equal, but to become different – to realize the unique potential he or she possesses.”
Ford, Henry – Founder of the Ford Motor Company, inventor
“Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty.
Whether you think you can or think you can’t, you’re right.”
France, Anatole – French author
“The art of teaching is the art of awakening the natural curiosity of young minds.”
Gandhi, Mohandas – Political and Spiritual leader of India
“Real education consists in drawing the best out of yourself. What better book can there be than the book of humanity.”
Ginott, Haim – Child psychologist and psychotherapist, teacher
“The main value of homework lies in the experience it gives a child to work on his own.”
“Good discipline is a series of little victories in which a teacher, through small decencies, reaches a child’s heart.”
Glasser, William, M.D. – Jewish American phychiatrist
“Most of the trouble and friction among people, in or out of school, is
caused by putting others down.”
Hazlitt, William – English writer
“Zeal will do more than knowledge.”
Hepburn, Katharine –Best actress Oscar Award winner
“The notion that work is a burden is a terrible mistake. Working and facing up to one’s responsibilities: That’s happiness.”
Highet, Gilbert –Teacher of Humanities
“Learning is a natural pleasure, inborn and instinctive, one of the earliest pleasures and one of the essential pleasures of the human race.”
Inge, William Ralph –English author, Anglican priest
“The aim of education is the knowledge not of facts but of values.”
Irving, Washington – American author
“Great minds have purposes; others have wishes.”
James, William – American psychologist and philosopher
“Believe that your life is worth living, and your belief will help create
the fact.”
Jefferson, Thomas – 3rd President of the United States
“I know no safe depository of the ultimate powers of the society but the people themselves; and if we think them not enlightened enough to exercise their control with a wholesome discretion, the remedy is not to take it from them but to inform their discretion by education. This is the true corrective of abuses of constitutional power.”
Johannot, Louis – Headmaster, Institut Le Rosey, Switzerland
“The only reason I always try to meet and know the parents better is because it helps me to forgive their children.”
Johnson, Lyndon Baines – 36th President of the United States
“Poverty must not be a bar to learning, and learning must offer an
escape from poverty.”
Keller, Helen – American author, lecturer and activist. The first deaf/blind person to graduate from college
“I long to accomplish a great and noble task, but it is my chief duty to           accomplish humble tasks as though they were great and noble. The world is moved along, not only by the mighty shoves of its heroes but also by the aggregate of the tiny pushes of each honest worker.”
Kennedy, John F. – 35th President of the United States
“The human mind is our fundamental resource.”
Kierkegaard, Soren – Danish philosopher and theologian
“What is really important in education is not that the child learn this and that, but that the mind is matured and energy is aroused.”
King, Martin Luther, Jr. – Baptist minister, civil rights activist
“The function of education is to teach one to think intensively and to
think critically. Intelligence plus character – that is the goal of true
Kirk, Grayson – President of Columbia University
“The most important function of education at any level is to develop the personality of the individual and the significance of his life to himself and to others.”
Leslie, H.T. – Songwriter
“The game of life is not so much in holding a good hand as playing a
poor hand well.”
Lessinger, Leon – Educator, author
“Human beings are full of emotion, and the teacher who knows how to use it will have dedicated learners.”
Lindbergh, Anne Morrow – American aviator
“Only in growth, reform, and change, paradoxically enough, is true
security found.”
George, David Lloyd – Welsh Prime Minister
“There is nothing so fatal to character as half-finished tasks.”
Mann, Horace – Educator, college president
“A teacher who is attempting to teach without inspiring the pupil with a desire to learn is hammering on cold iron.”
Marshall, Sybil – British writer, teacher
“I had learned to respect the intelligence, integrity, creativity and capacity for deep thought and hard work latent somewhere in every child.”
Martineau, Harriet – English writer, philosopher
“What office is there which involves more responsibility, which requires more qualifications, and which ought, therefore, to be more honorable than that of teaching?”
Mason, John M. – Presbyterian preacher
“Education should convert the mind into a living fountain and not a reservoir.”
Maugham, Somerset – English playwright, novelist
“To acquire the habit of reading is to construct for yourself a refuge
from almost all the miseries of life.”
Natanson, Maurice – Professor of philosophy
“What a teacher doesn’t say is a telling part of what a student hears.”
Nathan, Joe – Director, Center for School Change
“All our children deserve teachers who believe they can learn and who
will not be satisfied until they do.  If we think about our own lives, we’ll remember how much more we learned from those who encouraged us.”
Nehring, James – Professor, University of Massachusetts
“Calming down a noisy, rebellious group of adolescents is a lot like defusing a bomb. Careful, premeditated, calm responses are crucial to success.”
Pasteur, Louis – French chemist and microbiologist
“Chance favors the prepared mind.”
Plato – Ancient Greek philosopher
“Let early education be a sort of amusement; you will then be better able to discover the child’s natural bent.”
Powell, Eleanor – Dancer and actress
“What we are is God’s gift to us. What we become is our gift to God.”
Syrus, Publilius – Latin writer of maxims, improviser, mime
“It is no profit to have learned well if you neglect to do well.”
Pusey, Nathan, M. – Prominent American educator
“We live in a time of such rapid change and growth of knowledge that only he who is in a fundamental sense a scholar – that is, a person who continues to learn and inquire – can hope to keep pace, let alone play the role of guide.”
Robertson, F.W. – Superintendent
“Instruction ends in the schoolroom, but education ends only with life.”
Roosevelt, Theodore – 26th President of the United States
“To educate a man in mind and not in morals is to educate a menace to society.”
Salholtz, Eloise – Writer
“Living up to basic ethical standards in the classroom discipline, tolerance, honesty – is one of the most important ways children learn how to function in society at large.”
Spencer, Herbert – English philosopher
“Education has for its object the formation of character. This is the aim of both parent and teacher.”
Sullivan, Annie – Teacher, best known as Helen Keller’s tutor
“My heart is singing for joy this morning. A miracle has happened! The light of understanding has shone upon my little pupil’s mind, and, behold, all things are changed.”
Toffler, Alvin – American writer and futurist
“The illiterate of [the future] will not be the individual who cannot read, but the one who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn.”
Truman, Harry S. – 33rd President of the United States
“It’s what you learn after you know it all that counts.”
Van Doren, Mark – Pulitzer Prize winning poet and critic
“Teaching is the art of assisting discovery.”
Webster, Daniel – American statesman, attorney
“If we work upon marble, it will perish; if we work on brass, time will efface it. If we rear temples, they will crumble to dust. But if we work on men’s immortal minds, if we impress on them high principles, the just fear of God, and love for their fellowmen, we engrave on those tablets something which no time can efface and which will brighten and brighten to all eternity.”
Whitehead, Alfred North – English mathematician and philosospher
“From the very beginning of his education, the child should experience the joy of discovery.”
Wilson, Eugene S. – Dean, Amherst College
“Only the curious will learn, and only the resolute will overcome the obstacles to learning. The quest quotient has always excited me more than the intelligence quotient.”
© Copyright 2008. Meiss Education Institute. All rights reserved.

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