Quotes on Teaching and Learning
Opinionated quotations from the famous and not-so-famous.
There's put-down humor, where a person or a group of people is the target of cruelty in the guise of a "joke." And then there's inclusive humor—the kind I practice and promote in my work. Inclusive humor means everyone is included in the laughter and it isn't at anyone else's expense.
Take the attitude of a student, never be too big to ask questions, never know too much to learn something new.
There was a cover story in Fortune magazine . . . on chief executive officers who had dyslexia and of course, until recently, dyslexics were treated like dirt in the school system. And the guy who ran Kinko's was a dyslexic and I love this: when he was being just battered and bruised in school his mother told him not to worry Paul, in the long run, the A students work for the B students, the C students run the businesses and the D students get the buildings named after them.
Tell if you know, ask if you don't.
Duane Alan Hahn
I have never let my schooling interfere with my education.
A child educated only at school is an uneducated child.
Who dares to teach must never cease to learn.
John Cotton Dana
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
The aim of education should be to teach us rather how to think, than what to think—rather to improve our minds, so as to enable us to think for ourselves, than to load the memory with the thoughts of other men.
The best teacher is the one who suggests rather than dogmatizes, and inspires his listener with the wish to teach himself.
Edward G. Bulwer-Lytton
The true aim of everyone who aspires to be a teacher should be, not to impart his own opinions, but to kindle minds.
Frederick W. Robertson
Good teaching is one-fourth preparation and three-fourths theater.
It seems that, as parents and educators, we mold children's values and morals. We teach them valuable lessons related to honesty, courage, integrity, loyalty and so on. Yet it seems that we allow children to dictate to us the concept of 'fairness.' When asked to define 'fairness,' most children respond: "Fairness means everybody gets the same." Unfortunately, we often allow children to convince us that this indeed is the definition of that concept. As a result, we attempt to deal with all children in an identical manner. When a teacher modifies a lesson for an LD child or adjusts the course requirements for him, his classmates charge that the situation is 'unfair.' Rather than respond to their complaints, the teacher should explain that the mature conceptualization of 'fairness' is not equal, identical treatment; rather, 'fairness' means that every student receives what he needs. Because each individual's needs are different, 'fairness' dictates that their programs and expectations will be different. Children are capable of understanding this concept if it is explained clearly and if it is observed daily in the teacher's modeling behavior.
The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires.
William A. Ward
A teacher affects eternity; he can never tell where his influence stops.
Teaching should be such that what is offered is perceived as a valuable gift and not as a hard duty.
Knowledge exists to be imparted.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
Wise men learn by other men's mistakes, fools by their own.
He that imagines he has knowledge enough has none.
A teacher is one who makes himself progressively unnecessary.
The art of teaching is the art of assisting discovery.
Mark Van Doren
When you only read things that you agree with, the mind becomes stagnant.
Duane Alan Hahn
If you have knowledge, let others light their candles at it.
To me the charm of an encyclopedia is that it knows—and I needn't.
When one teaches, two learn.
You teach what you have to learn. It is not necessary to have achieved perfection to speak of perfection. It is not necessary to have achieved mastery to speak of mastery.
God from Conversations with God (Book 3) through Neale Donald Walsch
By three methods we may learn wisdom: First, by reflection, which is noblest; Second, by imitation, which is easiest; and third by experience, which is the bitterest.
One of the most exciting developments in modern education goes by the name of cooperative (or collaborative) learning and has children working in pairs or small groups. An impressive collection of studies has shown that participation in well-functioning cooperative groups leads students to feel more positive about themselves, about each other, and about the subject they're studying. Students also learn more effectively on a variety of measures when they can learn with each other instead of against each other or apart from each other. Cooperative learning works with kindergartners and graduate students, with students who struggle to understand and students who pick things up instantly; it works for math and science, language skills and social studies, fine arts and foreign languages.
Alfie Kohn from Punished By Rewards
We destroy the love of learning in children, which is so strong when they are small, by encouraging and compelling them to work for petty and contemptible rewards, gold stars, or papers marked 100 and tacked to the wall, or A's on report cards, or honor rolls, or dean's lists, or Phi Beta Kappa keys, in short, for the ignoble satisfaction of feeling that they are better than someone else.
John Holt (adapted)
One must marvel at the intellectual quality of a teacher who can't understand why children assault one another in the hallway, playground, and city street, when in the classroom the highest accolades are reserved for those who have beaten their peers. In many subtle and some not so subtle ways, teachers demonstrate that what children learn means much less than that they triumph over their classmates. Is this not assault? Classroom defeat is only the pebble that creates widening ripples of hostility. It is self-perpetuating. It is reinforced by peer censure, parental disapproval, and loss of self-concept. If the classroom is a model, and if that classroom models competition, assault in the hallways should surprise no one.
Joseph Wax (adapted)
Arrogance, pedantry, and dogmatism…the occupational diseases of those who spend their lives directing the intellects of the young.
Henry S. Canby
Learning without thought is labor lost.
It's easy to point a finger, but much harder to point the way.
Duane Alan Hahn
How is it that little children are so intelligent and men so stupid? It must be education that does it.
I have learned silence from the talkative, toleration from the intolerant, and kindness from the unkind; yet, strange, I am ungrateful to those teachers.
A lesson that is never learned can never be too often taught.
To free a person from error is to give, and not to take away.
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Teaching and Learning