The 100 Greatest Education Quotes

A child miseducated is a child lost.

John F. Kennedy

A good teacher must be able to put himself in the place of those who find learning hard.

Eliphas Levi

A liberal education is at the heart of a civil society, and at the heart of a liberal education is the act of teaching.

A. Bartlett Giamatti

An educational system isn’t worth a great deal if it teaches young people how to make a living but doesn’t teach them how to make a life.

Author Unknown

All the world is a laboratory to the inquiring mind.

Martin H. Fischer

An investment in knowledge pays the best dividends.

Benjamin Franklin

Around here, we don’t look backwards for very long… We keep moving forward, opening up new doors and doing new things because we’re curious… and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths.

Walt Disney

Before any great things are accomplished, a memorable change must be made in the system of education…to raise the lower ranks of society nearer to the higher.

John Adams

Better than a thousand days of diligent study is one day with a great teacher.

Japanese Proverb

Children have to be educated, but they have also to be left to educate themselves.

Ernest Dimnet

Children must be taught how to think, not what to think.

Margaret Mead

Do not confine your children to your own learning, for they were born in another time.

Chinese Proverb

Do you know the secret of the true scholar? In every man there is something wherein I may learn of him; and in that I am his pupil.

Ralph Waldo Emerson

Don’t just teach your kids to read, teach them to question what they read. Teach them to question everything.

George Carlin

Education aims to give you a boost up the ladder of knowledge. Too often, it just gives you a cramp on one of its rungs.

Martin H. Fischer

Education costs money, but then so does ignorance.

Claus Moser


Education is a better safeguard of liberty than a standing army.

Edward Everett

Education is a progressive discovery of our own ignorance.

Will Durant

Education is a vaccine for violence.

Edward James Olmos

Education is not filling of a pail but the lighting of a fire.

William Butler Yeats

Education is not preparation for life; education is life itself.

John Dewey

Education is not the filling of a pail but the lighting of a fire.

William Butler Yeats

Education is simply the soul of a society as it passes from one generation to another.

G.K. Chesterton

Education is the ability to listen to almost anything without losing your temper or your self-confidence.

Robert Frost

Education is the key to unlock the golden door of freedom.

George Washington Carver

Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.

Nelson Mandela

Education is what remains after one has forgotten what one has learned in school.

Albert Einstein

Education is what survives when what has been learned has been forgotten.

B.F. Skinner

Education is… doing anything that changes you.

George B. Leonard

Education should be exercise; it has become massage.

Martin H. Fischer

Education would be much more effective if its purpose was to ensure that by the time they leave school every boy and girl should know how much they do not know, and be imbued with a lifelong desire to know it.

William Haley

Education… has produced a vast population able to read but unable to distinguish what is worth reading.

G.M. Trevelyan


Every child deserves a champion – an adult who will never give up on them, who understands the power of connection and insists that they become the best that they can possibly be.

Rita Pierson

Every time you stop a school, you will have to build a jail. What you gain at one end you lose at the other. It’s like feeding a dog on his own tail. It won’t fatten the dog.

Mark Twain

Friendship is a horizon – which expands whenever we approach it.

E.R. Hazlip

Good teaching is one-fourth preparation and three-fourths theatre.

Gail Goldwin

He who opens a school door, closes a prison.

Victor Hugo

I am not a teacher, but an awakener.

Robert Frost

I cannot teach anybody anything, I can only make them think.


I did then what I knew how to do. Now that I know better, I do better.

Maya Angelou

I have never let my schooling interfere with my education.

Mark Twain

I read Shakespeare and the Bible, and I can shoot dice. That’s what I call a liberal education.

Tallulah Bankhead

I’m not afraid of storms, for I’m learning to sail my ship.


If you are planning for a year, sow rice; if you are planning for a decade, plant trees; if you are planning for a lifetime, educate people.

Chinese Proverb

If you think education is expensive, try ignorance.

Derek Bok

It is a thousand times better to have common sense without education than to have education without common sense.

Robert G. Ingersoll

It’ll be a great day when education gets all the money it wants, and the Air Force has to hold a bake sale to buy bombers.

Author unknown

Learning is never done without errors and defeat.

Vladimir Lenin


Learning never exhausts the mind.

Leonardo Da Vinci

Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.

Mahatma Gandhi

Logic will get you from A to B. Imagination will take you everywhere.

Albert Einstein

Minds are like parachutes, they only function when they are open.

James Dewar

My idea of education is to unsettle the minds of the young and inflame their intellects.

Robert Maynard Hutchins

Nations have recently been led to borrow billions for war; no nation has ever borrowed largely for education. Probably, no nation is rich enough to pay for both war and civilization. We must make our choice; we cannot have both.

Abraham Flexner

No man who worships education has got the best out of education…. Without a gentle contempt for education no man’s education is complete.

G.K. Chesterton

Once you have learned to ask questions – relevant and appropriate and substantial questions – you have learned how to learn and no one can keep you from learning whatever you want or need to know.

Neil Postman and Charles Weingartner

Only a generation of readers will spawn a generation of writers.

Steven Spielberg

Real education must ultimately be limited to men who INSIST on knowing, the rest is mere sheep-herding.

Ezra Pound

Teach the children so it will not be necessary to teach the adults.

Abraham Lincoln

Teachers open the door, but you must enter by yourself.

Chinese Proverb

Teaching is more than imparting knowledge; it is inspiring change.

William Arthur Ward

Learning is more than absorbing facts; it is acquiring understanding.

William Arthur Ward

Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn.

Benjamin Franklin

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 thoughts of other men.

Bill Beattie


The basic idea behind teaching is to teach people what they need to know.

Carl Rogers

The beautiful thing about learning is that no one can take it away from you.

B.B. King

The best education in the world is that got by struggling to get a living.

Wendell Phillips

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.

The greatest sign of a success for a teacher…is to be able to say, “The children are now working as if I did not exist.”

Maria Montessori

The hardest thing to teach is how to care.


The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires.

William A. Ward

The mind is not a vessel to be filled, but a fire to be ignited.


The more that you read, the more things you will know, the more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.

Dr. Seuss

The object of education is to prepare the young to educate themselves throughout their lives.

Robert Maynard Hutchins

The principal goal of education in the schools should be creating men and women who are capable of doing new things, not simply repeating what other generations have done.

Jean Piaget

The school is the last expenditure upon which America should be willing to economize.

Franklin D. Roosevelt

The secret in education lies in respecting the student.

Ralph Waldo Emerson

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

The whole purpose of education is to turn mirrors into windows.

Sydney J. Harris

The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page.

Augustine of Hippo


There is no friends as loyal as a book.

Ernest Hemingway

To the uneducated, an A is just three sticks.

A.A. Milne

Too many of our children cannot read. Reading is the building block, and it must be the foundation for education reform.

President George W. Bush

We shouldn’t teach great books; we should teach a love of reading.

B. F. Skinner

What sculpture is to a block of marble, education is to a human soul.

Joseph Addison

What we learn with pleasure we never forget.

Alfred Mercier

What we want is to see the child in pursuit of knowledge, and not knowledge in pursuit of the child.

George Bernard Shaw

Whatever the cost of our libraries, the price is cheap compared to that of an ignorant nation.

Walter Cronkite

When you learn, teach. When you get, give.

Maya Angelou

Why should society feel responsible only for the education of children, and not for the education of all adults of every age?

Erich Fromm

You can never be overdressed or over educated.

Oscar Wilde

You can teach a student a lesson for a day; but if you can teach him to learn by creating curiosity he will continue the learning process as long as he lives.

Clay P. Bedford

You educate a man; you educate a man. You educate a woman; you educate a generation.

Brigham Young

Education is not the means of showing people how to get what they want. Education is an exercise by means of which enough men, it is hoped, will learn to want what is worth having.

Ronald Reagan

Education is not a problem. Education is an opportunity.

Lyndon Johnson