Teachers and Teaching Sermon Illustrations

Teachers and Teaching Sermon Illustrations

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Public schools need teachers brimming with the enthusiasm of football coaches.
Teachers should induce the lazy student to "play over his head intellectually," just as the football coach encourages his players to play to the limit of their ability.—Vernon Nickell, Former Superintendent of Public Instruction, Illinois


There are as many kinds of good teaching as there are good apples, good times, or good women. Appreciating one kind of good apple, good time or good woman does not make all other kinds bad.—Don Robinson, Phi Delta Kappan


The great teacher is rarely popular. He is interested in something more important than winning the affections of an unending anonymous procession of young people ... I have long maintained that any college can raise its standards simply by firing annually whichever professor is voted "Best Liked" by the graduating class.—Clifton Fadiman, Holiday


Four ninth-grade classes in a Philadelphia junior high school were asked to describe the qualifications of an ideal teacher.

From the students came this solitary gem, an unintentional proverb from Tom: "An old grouch discourages learning even more than a grouch."—Harry H. Matlock, Clearing House


In the U.S. the average college and university instructor now gets less pay than the average wageworker; the average full professor gets only 55% more than the wageworker despite his large investment of time and funds in obtaining a license to practice his profession. In Russia, by contrast, the average full professor gets 700% more than the average wageworker.—Dr. F. A. Harper, Freeman


As a teacher he was a firebug; he had the ability to light a lot of fuel.


Teacher to small boy: "No matter what your father said, money is not considered one of this country's major exports."—Larry Harris, The Christian Science Monitor


A teacher should always be determined to make it tough for his students, and by tough we do not mean unpleasant. We mean make the work tough enough to challenge them. 'Challenge-stimulated learning" is a tired but everlasting truism.—Don Robinson, Phi Delta Kappan


Unless teachers catch the new "drive and enthusiasm" in education, something new may be added to the handbook prepared by the principal.

It might read like this: "Teachers may leave the building at the dismissal bell on Friday—but please don't trample the pupils."


Teach—five letters ... its meaning? "To make to know how." Five words define it; five thousand won't perform its delicate task unless the teacher himself is taught, trained, made aware . . . .


The teacher who does not love poetry does a rather poor job of arranging a love affair between words and the child.—Frank Jennings


When the Germans marched into Paris in 1870, it was the German schoolmaster who marched down the street. It was the Jap schoolmaster who made pre-World War II Japan. It is the American schoolteacher who has made possible America as we know her today.

Paraphrasing H. G. Wells: The next 25 years will be a race between great teaching and the destruction of our civilization.

Leverett Wilson Springs: evaluating Hopkins. "His enthusiasm continued for threescore years with no abatement."

The responsibility for inspired teachers rests on college faculties.

When Dr. Frank McMurray retired as President of Teachers College, Columbia, he said, "Here we find the greatest thing in teaching, helping the student to find himself." He added, "If I had my educational career to live over again, I would take a greater interest in the individual student."


During the obsequies of a friend who had taught school for years, the parson had many fine things to say, ending on the theme that she is probably carrying on her work in heaven.

A teacher in the group leaned over to a colleague and groaned, "Good heavens, don't we ever get to quit!"—Eugene P. Beaten, Pennsylvania School Journal


She is a charming and thrifty Frenchwoman who teaches conversational French. The other day her television set did not function and she called the repairman. He spent 18 minutes checking the set and putting in a new tube, then presented her with a
bill for $9.60—$6 service charge and $3.60 for a new tube. The volatile Frenchwoman was voluble.

"Do you know," she said, "how long I have to work teaching French to pay that $6 you charged for 18 minutes' work?"

"No," answered the repairman, "but do you guarantee that your students can speak French? I guarantee that this TV set will run.'—Mrs. Arthur F. Shuey, Shreveport, Louisiana


The only trouble with psychology in teaching is that it is so seldom used. When the chips are down and in the classroom that may be nearly all the time, the teacher reverts to his own basic emotional pattern, which frequently includes impatience, irritation, and meeting hostility with hostility. He does not respond with the psychological pattern he has heard described as desirable in education lectures, for you cannot overlay a brand new personality on anyone by a lecture course in educational psychology or mental health, or even by an exposure to "the ideal group experience."—Don Robinson, Phi Delta Kappan


Don't be so disturbed by the fact that nearly half of the men in teaching, if they had their lives to live over again, would choose another occupation. Psychologists tell us that four-fifths of Americans are "so sick of their jobs they could spit at them!"


But the average graduating class of teachers, you tell me, should consist entirely of Christ-like characters who will ignore the needs of their families, labor twice as hard as anyone else to make a living, work in unfavorable circumstances, handicapped by an uncooperative public (indeed, in many cases, by an uncooperative administration as well), and remain idealistic. All this for the reward of having contributed to the enrichment and betterment of others.—Excerpt of a letter by Thomas Schneider, Cody High School, Detroit, Michigan Phi Delta Kappan

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