My Kingdom for a book — Ex Libris

In this summer of 2016, I have revisited a couple of books ( What Great Teachers Do Differently by Todd Whitaker, 2004 and Lessons From The Classroom by Hal Urban, 2008)  and here are some of the salient ideas about the qualities of the art of teaching: 

+get better every year,

+inspire students with goal setting,

+use the power of quotations,

+laugh with your students,

+educate the whole person (values and character),

+be enthusiastic, celebrate life in class, model a positive attitude,

+choose your battles,

+build partnerships,

+teach the golden rule,

+respect your students,

+nurture your expertise in your subject area,

+nourish affirmations,

+demonstrate leadership skills,

+be professional,

+avoid toxic words,

+teach to your student’s needs,

+establish high standards and expectations,

+no teacher has all the answers,

+no strategy works every time,

+don’t expect to reach every student,

+each teacher needs to adopt strategies to their style,

+the key variable is the personality of the teacher,

+the first two weeks of class determine success or failure for the rest of the semester,

+set the foundation first and great success will follow,

+practice effective teaching strategies, be an effective communicator,

+and achieve high academic standards.

Of course, each one of these qualities was developed, explained, and supported by concrete and relevant examples. It is my hope that what our students will ultimately learn from us is to motivate and inspire themselves as reflected in the following quotations:


“A 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.” Gahil Gibran


“To understand  truth one must have a very sharp, precise, clear mind; not a cunning mind, but a mind that is capable of looking without any distortion, a mind innocent and vulnerable. Only such a mind can see what truth is. Nor can a mind that is filled with knowledge perceive what truth is; only a mind that is completely capable of learning can do that. Learning is not the accumulation of knowledge. Learning is movement from moment to moment.” – J. Krishnamurti


“The function of education is to teach one to think intensively and to think critically. Intelligence plus character – that is the goal of true education.” – Martin Luther King, Jr.


“Thinking is skilled work. It is not true that we are naturally endowed with the ability to think clearly and logically – without learning how, or without practicing.” – Alfred Mander


“I cannot teach anybody anything, I can only make them think.” –  Socrates 


“Learning without thought is labor lost; thought without learning is perilous.” Confucius 


“Education is not filling of a pail.  It is the lighting of a fire.” – William Butler Yeats


“We  need to teach students how to think rather than what to think” –Margaret Mead 


“Read not to contradict and confute; nor to believe and take for granted; nor to find talk and discourse; but to weigh and consider.” – Francis Bacon



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