Staying Motivated To Teach


It is something that many people don’t want to talk about but the truth about teaching is that it can be a really hard slog and there are times when you lose faith and confidence in what you are doing. This is especially true of you have a difficult group of students who struggle, and it is up to you to be the guiding light in terms of helping them. One way in which I keep motivated to wake up each morning and ensure that I give my students the best education possible, is to surround myself with quotes, in my office, at home and in my car.

I was given this piece of advice by Kevin Rolle Alabama University Vice President and one of the most intelligent educational minds that I have ever seen, he told me that he had done this throughout his career, and I took the advice. I wanted then to share with you some of my favourite quotes, in the hopes that they can inspire you to keep going out there and giving your best.

“You will search the world over and not find a nonsuperstitious community. As long as there is ignorance, there will be adherence to superstition. Dispelling ignorance is the only solution. That is why I teach.”

Irvin D. Yalom

“But the purpose of a story is to teach and to please at once, and what it teaches is how to recognize the snares of the world.”

Umberto Eco

“Proper teaching is recognized with ease. You can know it without fail because it awakens within you that sensation which tells you this is something you have always known.”

Frank Herbert

“Teach all men to fish, but first teach all men to be fair. Take less, give more. Give more of yourself, take less from the world. Nobody owes you anything, you owe the world everything.”

Suzy Kassem

“Teachers are mind engineers! Teachers are life directors! Don’t ever undermine a teacher!”

Ernest Agyemang Yeboah

“The teacher is of course an artist, but being an artist does not mean that he or she can make the profile, can shape the students. What an educator does in teaching is to make it possible for the students to become themselves.”

Paulo Freire

“One of the problems with teaching is that there’s a temptation to evaluate what we do in the classroom based on how clever it aligns with a larger philosophy, or even how gratifying it is to use not necessarily how effective it is…”

Doug Lemov

“There is no such thing a boring content. In the hands of a great teacher…even if as teachers we doubt that we can make it so…this doubt puts us at risk of undercutting it: watering it down or apologizing for teaching it.”

Doug Lemov

And there you have it, surround yourself with quotes like these and you can really help yourself to stay focussed and motivated to teach.