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19 Inspiring Quotes from Teachers Around the World

Teachers are shaping the future leaders of our world.

1 / 19
Children playing tug of war at the parkRobert Kneschke/Shutterstock

All that matters          

“Be nice to each other. It’s all that really matters.”—Dawn Hochsprung

These are things your child’s teacher won’t tell you.

2 / 19
education, high school, university, learning and people concept - happy african american student boy or young man reading book sitting on stairs at librarySyda Productions/Shutterstock

Work hard now 

“Life is not about where you start, rather where you finish. Work hard now for success later in life.”—Len Saunders

3 / 19
group of students study with professor in modern school classroomdotshock/Shutterstock

Voice for students

“I became a teacher because I wanted to be the person I wish I’d had when I was in school. I want to be a voice that speaks life.”—Milken educator Vincent Chiaramonte

4 / 19
Teacher studying school books in class with high school kidsMonkey Business Images/Shutterstock

Break their mold

“When you change, that will scare people. Fine. Scare them. You don’t owe it to anyone else to be your second best self. You don’t owe it to anyone else to stay the same. Break their mold, and be the person you were meant to be.”—Arvin Vohra

Don’t miss these hilarious classroom stories guaranteed to give you a laugh.

5 / 19
Elementary school kids climbing on to a school busMonkey Business Images/Shutterstock

Doing the best for their students

“How can we get and keep good teachers? Acknowledge and honor them for their hard work. Showcase the growth our students are making and how teachers have made an impact on the lives of others. Teaching is challenging, but when a district or building offers the right support and environment, it encourages teachers to stay and do their best for their students.”—Milken educator Aimee Schade

6 / 19
Teacher or docent or educator giving while lesson in front of a blackboard or board a sheet of paper and educate or teaching students or pupils or mates in a school or classRoman Kosolapov/Shutterstock

Take action

“Move from a ‘one day’ mentality to ‘one day at a time.’ You don’t need to be the smartest or most talented. You don’t have to come up with the next big idea. You just need to take action. That will set you apart from the rest. And it will attract them to follow you.”—Christopher K. Lee, MPH, CPHQ

Anything is possible one day at a time–this woman didn’t let being paralyzed stop her from dancing.

7 / 19
Little girls reading books in librarySergey Nivens/Shutterstock

Work in progress

“Kids are a work in progress, as we all are. It’s so unfair for us to judge them based on what they have done or how they have acted in years past. I tell my students that every day is a new day to start fresh and be reflective on ourselves so we can constantly improve and be better than we were yesterday.”—Milken educator Amanda Robertson

You’ll definitely want to read these quotes that prove teachers make the best mentors.

8 / 19
Shot of young asian female student sitting at table and writing on notebook. Young female student studying in library.Jacob Lund/Shutterstock

Prepare well

“Performance is based upon preparation; therefore, prepare well and you will perform well.”—Damon Nailer

9 / 19
College Students Using Computers On Media Studies CourseMonkey Business Images/Shutterstock

Caring for students

“I know I’m succeeding as an educator when my kids feel good about themselves and they know I care. Academics are very important, but my students’ well being is most important. Once they know I care about them, they aim to please me, and that’s when learning happens.”—Milken educator Catherine Randall

10 / 19
Coach spending time mentoring a student athlete.digitalskillet/Shutterstock

Always listen

“Listening can heal the ears. Learning to listen can heal the soul. Teaching people to listen can heal the world.”—Adam Cole

These are the secrets your child’s teacher knows (but you don’t).

11 / 19
Teacher With College Students Giving Lesson In ClassroomMonkey Business Images/Shutterstock

Share your story

“I teach my students that when people feel helpless, sharing stories is a powerful way to promote understanding, empathy, and change.”—Milken educator Gina Benz

12 / 19
Senior teacher teaching biology to high school students in laborHalfpoint/Shutterstock


“The difference between ordinary and extraordinary is that little ‘extra’.”—Natalie Tanner

These are the secrets of straight A students that all students should steal.

13 / 19
Primary school teacher with a schoolgirl in class, close upMonkey Business Images/Shutterstock

Labor of love

“I think we need to encourage others by reinforcing the fact that teaching is a labor of love. If you keep the kids at the front of your mind and think about the direct impact you can have on their future, then all of the other stuff doesn’t seem to matter.”—Milken educator Kelly Sutcliffe

14 / 19
Female hand over paper making notes at seminarLucky Business/Shutterstock

Win and learn

“You don’t win and lose in life. You only win and learn in life.”—Vanky Kenny Kataria

15 / 19
Young asian boy hang the yellow bar by his hand to exercise at out door playgroundTinnaPong/Shutterstock

New day, new chance

“[I hope my students remember] that moments, good or bad, don’t define you. Every day, you have a chance to do great things by serving and taking care of others. I hope they remember that darkness is only defeated by brave people being light when others are scared to. I hope they remember that there is a world outside of their house, their city, their state. I hope they remember to challenge things and form their own opinions based upon everything they continue to learn.”—Milken educator Thomas Dennison

This is what your child’s principal is secretly thinking.

16 / 19
Many students raising their hands in class for an answerRobert Kneschke/Shutterstock

Changing the world

“Great teachers come to understand that, yes, teaching can change the world—but only one heart, one mind, at a time. And yet this is how we’ve always changed the world.”—Tim J. Myers, teacher and author of Glad to Be Dad: A Call to Fatherhood

17 / 19
Elementary school kids sitting around teacher in a classroomMonkey Business Images/Shutterstock

Encouragement matters

“When I think of teachers who have impacted my educational journey, I don’t recall the assignments given, the tests or quizzes. I remember how they encouraged me, inspired me, and believed in me. I have an emotional connection with those teachers; their energy motivated me to excel. I hope my students recall the same about Ms. Alexander.”—Milken educator Amara Alexander

18 / 19
Happy kids at elementary

Learn through laughter                                              

“Once children feel comfortable in their learning environment, they are more willing to take risks socially and academically. So I try to bring a bit of laughter into my classroom each day. Laughter is a universal language.”—Kate Pappas

19 / 19
Education School Student Computer Network Technology

Shaping attitudes

“I just love the curiosity, positivity, and optimism [elementary-age] children bring to the classroom. It’s an incredible responsibility to shape the attitude children will have about school for years to come.”—Milken educator Katie Picciuto

Next, read the most inspirational quotes about teaching.

Morgan Cutolo
Morgan is an Associate Editor at Reader’s Digest. She graduated from the University of New Hampshire in 2016 where she received her Bachelor of Arts in Journalism. She writes for, helps lead the editorial relationship with our partners, manages our year-round interns, and keeps the hundreds of pieces of content our team produces every month organized. In her free time, she likes exploring the seacoast of Maine where she lives and works remotely full time and snuggling up on the couch with her corgi, Eggo, to watch HGTV or The Office.

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