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Overworked but often undervalued, teachers are the most important people in children’s lives, second only to their parents. Under the instruction of a great educator, an impressionable young spirit develops into an impressive human being, both intellectually and morally. We owe the current state of our minds and our hearts to the teachers of our childhood—and of our adulthood, as well. Today, we salute our teachers for the knowledge they’ve shared with us, and for inspiring us to strive to become better people. We don’t have an apple, but here are some timeless thoughts to brighten up the day of all teachers worldwide. Happy Teacher’s Day!

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Bringing Out the Best

“To stimulate life, leaving it then free to develop, to unfold, herein lies the first task of the teacher.”

Maria Montessori, Italian physician, educator, and founder of the Montessori method

“It is the supreme art of the teacher to awaken joy in creative expression and knowledge.”
Albert Einstein, German-Swiss-American scientist

“The teacher who is indeed wise does not bid you to enter the house of wisdom but rather leads you to the threshold of your mind.”
Kahlil Gibran, Lebanese-American artist, poet, and writer

“I like a teacher who gives you something to take home to think about besides homework.”
Lily Tomlin, American actress and comedienne, as her character "Edith Ann"

 

Teaching Skills

“The one exclusive sign of thorough knowledge is the power of teaching.”
Aristotle, Greek philosopher

“The man who can make hard things easy is the educator.”
Ralph Waldo Emerson, American poet, essayist and lecturer

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“Technology is just a tool. In terms of getting the kids working together and motivating them, the teacher is the most important.”
Bill Gates, American business magnate and chairman of Microsoft

“Good teaching is one-fourth preparation and three-fourths theater.”
Gail Godwin, American novelist and short story writer

“The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires.”
William A. Ward, American author of “Fountains of Faith” and one of the most-quoted writers of inspirational maxims

 

Shaping the Future

“I touch the future. I teach.”
Christa McAuliffe, American teacher and the first teacher in space

“Kind words can be short and easy to speak, but their echoes are endless.”
Mother Teresa, Albanian-Roman Catholic nun and founder of “Missionaries of Charity” in Calcutta

“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, American poet, essayist and lecturer

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“One good teacher in a lifetime may sometimes change a delinquent into a solid citizen.”
Philip Wylie, American writer

“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 material, but warmth is the vital element for the growing plant and for the soul of the child.”
Carl Jung, Swiss psychiatrist, influential thinker, and founder of Jungian psychology

“What nobler employment, or more valuable to the state, than that of the man who instructs the rising generation.”
Marcus Tullius Cicero, Roman philosopher and orator

 

Behind Every Success Story…

“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, American journalist and news anchor

“For every one of us that succeeds, it's because there’s somebody there to show you the way out. The light doesn’t always necessarily have to be in your family; for me it was teachers and school.”
Oprah Winfrey, American media personality and Time Magazine’s most influential woman in the world

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“Teaching is the profession that teaches all the other professions.”
Author Unknown

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