Best Quotes on Education and Teaching –The Top 500


Best quotes on education and teaching

Best Education Quotes

I value quotes on education and teaching because they yield the greatest insight from the fewest words. In this Top 500 Education Quotes section I list what I consider to be the most insightful, witty, or useful quotations from each of the 112 education-related and general interest quotation topics on the website. I provide these quotes as an introduction and enticement to each collection of quotations. Simply reading these education and teaching quotations for pleasure provides one with a potent burst of wisdom and beauty, which is both illuminating and rewarding. 

In addition to the wisdom and guidance quotes provide, quotes are perfectly suited for use in displays, presentations, speeches, research, students’ papers, and classroom lessons and discussions.

[Education and teaching quotes topics are listed alphabetically. To view the quotes for a particular topic, simply search for the topic keyword with an equal sign before the keyword—for example “=Values”. Also, listed below are the titles of each of the education and teaching quotation collection topics included in the website.]

SELECT THE LINK BELOW TO GET FREE DAILY EDUCATION QUOTES IN YOUR EMAIL INBOX: (Receive a free download of “Best Quotes on Children” for signing up [PDF 397 kb])


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Alcohol Drugs & Tobacco

Anger & Fighting






Business Education








Computer Education

Conduct of Life—Advice





Courtesy & Kindness


Dan L. Miller Quotes




Discipline & Behavior

Drivers Education






Family & Consumer Science


Foreign Language




Gun Violence






Human Relations


Industrial Arts & Technology




Language Leadership





Literary/Arts Criticism
















Physical Education & Athletics


Political Science








Retirement & Aging


School Principals




Self Concept/ Self- Esteem

Service Learning




Tardiness & Truancy








Women (Women’s Studies)

Work (Career Education)


Writing Advice

Writing—Habits of Famous Authors

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Whatever is worth doing at all, is worth doing well.

–Philip Dormer Stanhope

Effort equals results.

—Roger Penske

No one rises to low expectations.

–Les Brown

If you continuously compete with others, you become bitter. But if you continuously compete with yourself you become better.

The greater danger for most of us is not that our aim is too high and we miss it, but that it is too low and we reach it.



It seems to be a routine function of the generations to disparage the young. I don’t share this inclination, or at least I try to resist it. One reason? Show choir. Not just show choir. Soccer, too. And speech contest and cross-country. These are the agents of my personal observations of youth, the particular gifts of my three sons, extending to the passions of their acquaintances and friends—gymnastics, diving, football, marching band, robotics, science olympiad, water polo, volleyball and more. You cannot watch the determination, drive, sacrifice and joy inherent in such activities and not feel awe for the young men and women who embrace them.

—Jim Slusher

A simple cure to the heartbreak faced by many teenagers left off the cheerleading squad has been discovered by officials at Plainfield Middle School, Plainfield, Indiana. They let everyone be a cheerleader. ‘The cheerleading uniform companies love us,’ said principal Jerry Goldsberry, whose school has 73 cheerleaders this year. ‘I don’t know any other schools that do this. There may be some in the nation, but I don’t know of any in Indiana.’ The squad is made up of seventh and eighth grade girls, but Goldsberry said boys would be welcome to try out, too. The school, with 800 students in grades six through eight, also applies its wide-open membership policy to the band, the choir and most teams sports. Last year Goldsberry said every meet was ‘like the start of the Boston Marathon.’ He said the rule allowing everyone who tries to make the squad was adopted after an educational consultant stressed the importance of extracurricular activities. ‘Our philosophy is kids need to be involved in as many activities at school as they possibly can,’ Goldsberry said. ‘It’s generating school spirit. If they’re not here at school with their friends, they’d be at home in front of the TV or, in some cases, worse.’

Northern Illinois Gas Educators Newsletter

The public is screaming at us to produce people who know how to learn and study, who have the characteristics that business and industry require. Consider any list of what industry wants besides attendance records and report card averages: people skills, ability to accept responsibility and follow directions, good presentation of self and personal ideas. These are marketable skills, skills that are cultivated through student activities participation.

— Earl Reum

Any program that attracts 10 million participants, nearly 50 percent of the student body, and only requires a school board subsidy of less than one percent of the total school budget, is truly one of the last, great educational bargains.

—Terrell H. Bell

The other side of academics, if properly balanced, are school activities. Given the great diversity of the human personality, the random distribution of talent, and the wide range of individual intelligence, it is simply common sense to create an environment that is tailored and fine-tuned so that all God-given talent and intelligence is nourished in schools.

Many schools use activities to stimulate, nurture and strengthen pursuits. In addition to the values of the activities themselves, their potential to motivate and reward academic achievement must not be overlooked.

—Terrell H. Bell

I’ve never heard anyone look back years later at the time they spent in high school and wish they had been less involved (in activities). One of the biggest regrets I have heard from many people is that they didn’t get more involved.

I think for most people, you look back 20 or 30 years later at high school, it’s the activities they were involved in that are the memories. Many people have a lot of specific fond memories of their involvement, but I don’t think too many people have those same type of memories from just going to school.

—Kathy Robbins, Superintendent


Who would ever think that so much went on in the soul of a young girl?

—Anne Frank

Stop telling girls they can be anything they want when they grow up. I think it’s a mistake. Not because they can’t, but because it would have never occurred to them they couldn’t.

—Sarah Silverman

Somewhere slightly before or after the close of our second decade, we reach a momentous milestone—childhood’s end. We have left a safe place and can’t go home again. We have moved into a world where life isn’t fair, where life is rarely what it should be.

–Judith Viorst

For many adults, adolescence is a forgotten time in our lives—forgotten because we prefer to forget it. At no other time are we confronted with so many dramatic changes, and at no other time are we so poorly equipped with understanding to cope with those changes. Our bodies change, and we feel it, but we don’t understand it. Our feelings change and we don’t understand why. Our friends change and we feel the peer pressure, but we feel it without understanding it.

–J. Howard Johnston

If Booth Tarkington were to write Seventeen today, he would have to call it Twelve.

–Arthur Pearl

It confuses the sprouting adolescent to wake up every morning in a new body. It confuses the mother and father to find a new child every day in a familiar body.

–Donald Barr


If you ate today, thank a farmer.

Soil is the basis of everything.

–Michael Lee West


Agriculture is the most healthful, most useful and most noble employment of man. I had rather be on my own farm, than be emperor of the world.

—George Washington

The sun, with all those planets revolving around it and dependent upon it, can still ripen a bunch of grapes as if it had nothing else in the universe to do.

–Galileo Galilei

Sun, soil and rain come together in Iowa as in no other state. Poet Robert Frost, who lived on New England’s rocky slopes, once looked at Iowa’s thick, black soil and said, ‘It looks good enough to eat without putting it through vegetables.’


Out of the thirty thousand types of edible plants thought to exist on Earth, just eleven – corn, rice, wheat, potatoes, cassava, sorghum, millet, beans, barley, rye, and oats – account for 93 percent of all that humans eat, and every one of them was first cultivated by our Neolithic ancestors.

—Bill Bryson

Agriculture is not crop production as popular belief holds—it’s the production of food and fiber from the world’s land and waters. Without agriculture it is not possible to have a city, stock market, banks, university, church or army. Agriculture is the foundation of civilization and any stable economy.

—Allan Savory


Gardening is cheaper than therapy and you get tomatoes.

—Poster Slogan

The land is a mother that never dies.



Man—despite his artistic pretensions, his sophistication, and his many accomplishments—owes his existence to a six inch layer of topsoil and the fact that it rains.




Forecast for tonight: Alcohol, low standards and poor decisions.

Weather Poster

Research says that youthful binge drinking can have lasting consequences. They are called ‘children.’

–Jim Barach

Alcoholism isn’t a spectator sport. Eventually the whole family gets to play.

–Joyce Roberta-Burditt

Avoid using cigarettes, alcohol, and drugs as alternatives to being an interesting person.

—Marilyn vos Savant

People who will try anything once may not get a second chance.


One reason I don’t drink is that I want to know when I am having a good time.

–Lady Astor

It never occurred to me to stop using drugs. The classic agony of addiction. You can’t stop and you can’t go on. The pain of living without drugs was as bad as the pain of living with drugs. When you use drugs in such a willful way, you’re transgressing some elemental code. You’re destroying yourself, and body and soul recoils at it….Unfortunately…there is only one conclusion, and that is death (by misadventure).

–Marianne Faithfull


The only moral lesson which is suited for a child–the most important lesson for every time of life–is this: ‘Never hurt anybody.’

—Jean-Jacques Rousseau

How others treat me is their path; how I react is mine.

–Dr. Wayne Dyer

I shall allow no man to belittle my soul by making me hate him.

–Booker T. Washington

I don’t have to attend every argument I’m invited to.


The ‘gay boy’ you punched in the hall today committed suicide a few minutes ago. That girl you called a slut in class today. She’s a virgin. The boy you called lame. He has to work every night to support his family. That girl you pushed down the other day. She’s already being abused at home. That girl you called fat. She’s starving herself. The old man you made fun of cause of the ugly scars. He fought for our country. The boy you made fun of for crying. His mother is dying. You think you freaking know them. Guess what? You don’t!

—Fabiana Pereira

If someone treats you like crap, just remember that there is something wrong with them, not you. Normal people don’t go around destroying other human beings.

Hate is like drinking poison, hoping the other person will die.

–Rev. Marvin Wiley

Holding a grudge is letting someone live rent-free in your head.

–Esther Lederer


It is amazing how complete is the delusion that beauty is goodness.

–Leo Tolstoy

You’ve got to get up every morning with a smile on your face and show the world all the love in your heart….You’re going to find…that you’re beautiful as you feel.

–Carole King

She was beautiful, but not like those girls in the magazines. She was beautiful, for the way she thought. She was beautiful, for that sparkle in her eyes when she talked about something she loved. She was beautiful, for her ability to make other people smile even if she was sad. No, she wasn’t beautiful for something as temporary as her looks. She was beautiful, deep down to her soul.

—F. Scott Fitzgerald

Good-looking individuals are treated better than homely ones in virtually every social situation, from dating to trial by jury.

—Martha Beck

A pretty face is nothing if you have an ugly heart.

—Ged Backland

Everything has beauty, but not everyone can see it.


What a horror it must be for a child to discover that his skin is the wrong color.

–Sam Levenson


The surest test of the civilization of a people—at least, as sure as any—afforded by mechanical art is to be found in their architecture, which presents so noble a field for the display of the grand and the beautiful, and which, at the same time, is so intimately connected with the essential comforts of life.

–William Hickling Prescott

It does not much matter that an individual loses two or three hundred pounds in buying a bad picture, but it is to be regretted that a nation should lose two or three hundred thousand in raising a ridiculous building.

—John Ruskin

Architecture is a very dangerous job. If a writer makes a bad book, eh, people don’t read it. But if you make bad architecture, you impose ugliness on a place for a hundred years.

—Renzo Piano

The mother art is architecture. Without an architecture of our own we have no soul of our own civilization.

–Frank Lloyd Wright

You can put down a bad book; you can avoid listening to bad music; but you cannot miss the ugly tower block opposite your house.

—Renzo Piano


Photography records the gamut of feelings written on the human face; the beauty of the earth and skies that man has inherited; and the wealth and confusion man has created. It is a major force in explaining man to man.

–Edward Steichen

Art is like a border of flowers along the course of civilization.

–Lincoln Steffens

Art teaches nothing, except the significance of life.

–Henry Miller

Art is nothing more than the shadow of humanity.

–Henry James

Every artist dips his brush in his own soul, and paints his own nature into his pictures.

–Henry Ward Beecher

If you could say it in words there would be no reason to paint.

–Edward Hopper


We are not free. It was not intended we should be. A book of rules is placed in our cradle, and we never get rid of it until we reach our graves. Then we are free, and only then.

–Ed Howe

Obedience is the key to every door.

–George Macdonald

Rules are positive tools meant to serve the users.

–Amy Karst

Good laws make it easier to do right and harder to do wrong.

–William E. Gladstone

If authority has no ears to listen, it has no head to govern.

–Danish Proverb


A book is made from a tree. It is an assemblage of flat, flexible parts (still called ‘leaves’) imprinted with dark pigmented squiggles. One glance at it and you hear the voice of another person, perhaps someone dead for thousands of years. Across the millennia, the author is speaking, clearly and silently, inside your head, directly to you. Writing is perhaps the greatest of human inventions, binding together people, citizens of distant epochs, who never knew one another. Books break the shackles of time, proof that humans can work magic.

–Carl Sagan

Bookmark? You mean quitter strip?


Books are not lumps of lifeless paper but minds alive on the shelves. From each of them goes out its own voice…and just as the touch of a button on your stereo set will fill the room with music, so by taking down one of these volumes, and opening it, one can call into range the voice of a man far distant in time and space, and hear him speaking to us, mind to mind, heart to heart.

–Gilbert Highet

Books are the carriers of civilization. Without books, history is silent, literature dumb, science crippled, thought and speculation at a standstill. Without books, the development of civilization would have been impossible. They are engines of change (as the poet said), windows on the world and lighthouses erected in the sea of time. They are companions, teachers, magicians, bankers of the treasures of the mind. Books are humanity in print.

—Barbara W. Tuchman

The oldest books are still only just out to those who have not read them.

–Samuel Butler

A house without books is like a room without windows. No man has a right to bring up his children without surrounding them with books, if he has the means to buy them. It is a wrong to his family. Children learn to read by being in the presence of books. The love of knowledge comes with reading and grows upon it. And the love of knowledge, in a young mind, is almost a warrant against the inferior excitement of passions and vices.

–Horace Mann

A well-composed book is a magic carpet on which we are wafted to a world that we cannot enter in any other way.

–Caroline Gordon


Business? It’s quite simple. It’s other people’s money.

–Alexandre Dumas the Younger

Don’t open a shop unless you know how to smile.

–Jewish Proverb

I would rather be the man who bought the Brooklyn Bridge than the man who sold it.

–Will Rogers

A. T. Stewart started life with a dollar and fifty cents. This merchant prince began by calling at the doors of homes in order to sell needles, thread and buttons. He soon found the people did not want them, and his small stock was thrown back on his hands. Then he said wisely, ‘I’ll not buy any more of these goods, but I’ll go and ask people what they do want.’ Thereafter he studied the needs and desires of people, found out just what they most wanted, endeavored to meet those wants, and became the greatest business man of his time.

–Grenville Kleiser

Clients do not come first. Employees come first. If you take care of our employees, they will take care of the clients.

—Richard Branson

There is only one boss. The customer. And he can fire everybody in the company from the chairman on down, simply by spending his money somewhere else.

–Sam Walton

It is but a truism that labor is most productive where its wages are largest. Poorly paid labor is inefficient labor, the world over.

–Henry George

Big companies are small companies that have succeeded.

–Robert Townsend


The only valid censorship of ideas is the right of people not to listen

–Tom Smothers

The wonderful thing about libraries and bookstores—even the television or the radio—is that no one is forcing you to read anything, or to go to any particular movie, or to watch something on television or listen to something on the radio. You have free choice.

–Judith Krug

They condemn what they do not understand.


The books that the world calls immoral are the books that show the world its own shame.

–Oscar Wilde


It is not the strongest of the species that survive nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change.

–Charles Darwin

A bend in the road, is not the end of the road…unless you fail to make the turn.

–Helen Keller

People will begin to change when the pain of not changing is greater than the pain of changing.

–Ed Bales

Each of us must be the change we want to see in the world.

–Mahatma Gandhi

I cannot say whether things will get better if they change; what I can say is they must change if they are to get better.

–Georg C. Lichtenberg


Character matters. Researches concerned with academic-achievement gaps have begun to study, with increasing interest and enthusiasm, a set of personal qualities—often referred to as noncognitive skills, or character strengths—that include resilience, conscientiousness, optimism, self-control, and grit. These capacities generally aren’t captured by our ubiquitous standardized tests, but they seem to make a big difference in the academic success of children, especially low-income children.

—Paul Tough

In Japanese schools, the students don’t take any exams until they reach grade four (the age of 10). They just take small tests. It is believed that the goal for the first 3 years of school is not to judge the child’s knowledge or learning, but to establish good manners and to develop their character. Children are taught to respect other people and to be gentle to animals and nature. They also learn how to be generous, compassionate, and empathetic. Besides this, the kids are taught qualities like grit, self-control, and justice.

You can easily judge the character of a man by how he treats those who can do nothing for him.

—Malcolm S. Forbes

The 12 Principles of Character: (1) honesty, (2) understanding, (3) compassion and empathy, (4) appreciation, (5) patience, (6) discipline, (7) fortitude, (8) perseverance, (9) humor, (10) humility, (11) generosity, (12) respect.

–Kathryn B. Johnson

Get to know two things about a man—how he earns his money and how he spends it —and you have the clue to his character, for you have a searchlight that shows up the inmost recesses of his soul. You know all you need to know about his standards, his motives, his driving desires, his real religion.

–Robert James McCracken

I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.

–Martin Luther King, Jr.

The measure of a man’s real character is what he would do if he knew he never would be found out.

–Thomas Babington Macaulay


Children are the messages we send to a future we will not see.

–Neil Postman

At some point in your life your parents put you down and never picked you up again.


When a child gives you a gift, even if it is a rock they just picked up, exude gratitude. It might be the only thing they have to give, and they have chosen to give it to you.

—Dean Jackson


It’s so deeply disturbing to me that half of the eligible voters don’t vote in this country. We talk about how divided the country is. The truth is, we don’t even know. We just know what the half that voted thought. I’m a big fan of the Australian approach—there it’s required by law that you vote.

—Christie Hefner

The biggest need in politics and government today is for people of integrity and courage, who will do what they believe is right and not worry about the political consequences to themselves.

–Neva Beck Bosone

It’s not the hand that signs the laws that holds the destiny of America. It’s the hand that casts the ballot.

—Harry S. Truman

Someone struggled for your right to vote. Use it.

—Susan B. Anthony


Each time someone commented on how I’m always in a good mood or smiling, I felt more and more like a phony. If only they knew that, behind closed doors, I cried and crumbled under unrealistic expectations set not by peers or professors, but by me.

–Deborah Spar

Where you go is not who you’ll be.

—Frank Bruni


When dealing with people, remember you are not dealing with creatures of logic, but with creatures of emotion.

–Dale Carnegie

The human face is powered, depending on how you count them, by between 23 and 43 muscles, many of which attach to the skin, serving no obvious function for survival. An alien examining a human specimen in isolation wouldn’t know what to make of them. Tugging on the forehead, eyebrows, lips and cheeks, the muscles broadcast a wealth of information about our emotional state, level of interest and alertness. It is a remarkably efficient means of communication—almost instantaneous, usually accurate, transcending most language and cultural barriers.

—Jerry Adler

No one appreciates the very special genius of your conversation as a dog does.

–Christopher Morley

The great gift of conversation lies less in displaying it ourselves than in drawing it out of others. He who leaves your company pleased with himself and his own cleverness is perfectly well pleased with you.

–Jean De La Bruyère


Computers are incredibly fast, accurate, and stupid. Human beings are incredibly slow, inaccurate, and brilliant. Together they are powerful beyond imagination.

—Albert Einstein

It is as unforgivable to let a student graduate without knowing how to use a computer as it was in the past to let him graduate without knowing how to use a library.

–John Kennedy

I have a spelling checker, It came with my PC.

It plainly marks four my revue

Mistakes I cannot sea.

I’ve run this poem write through it,

I’m shore your pleas too no

It’s letter perfect in it’s weigh,

My checker tolled me sew!

New York Times

A word processor is only a fancy combination of a pencil, an eraser, and a scissors with a pot of paste; it’s the mind with its creativity that does the real work.

–Dan L. Miller

When a true history of our time is written—covering not only personalities and events but also technology, culture and lifestyles–the computer reckons to be a dominant character. It may ultimately rank with the steam engine, electricity and automobiles as a remolder of America.

–Robert J. Samuelson


The most solid comfort one can fall back upon is the thought that the business of one’s life is to help in some small way to reduce the sum of ignorance, degradation, and misery on the face of this beautiful earth.

–George Eliot

Be the person your dog thinks you are!

—J. W. Stephens

Be the reason someone smiles today.

—Nicholas Khoo

If you do not think about your future, you cannot have one.

–John Galsworthy

The best use of life is to spend it for something that outlasts life.

–William James

Make it a rule of life never to regret and never look back. Regret is an appalling waste of energy; you can’t build on it; it’s good only for wallowing in.

–Katharine Mansfield

Don’t let the darkness from your past block the light of joy in your present. What happened is done. Stop giving time to things which no longer exist, when there is so much joy to be found here and now.

—Karen Salmansohn

One looks back with gratitude to those who touched our human feelings. Warmth is the vital element for the growing plant and for the soul of the child.

–Carl Jung

Listen to the whispers and you won’t have to hear the screams.

–Cherokee Saying


Never bend your head.

Always hold it high.

Look the world straight in the eye.

–Helen Keller

Confidence is contagious. So is lack of confidence.

–Vince Lombardi

Everything you want is on the other side of fear.

–Jack Canfield

I was always looking outside myself for strength and confidence but it comes from within. It is there all the time.

—Anna Freud

If parents want to give their children a gift, the best thing they can do is to teach their children to love challenges, be intrigued by mistakes, enjoy effort, and keep on learning. That way, their children don’t have to be slaves of praise. They will have a lifelong way to build and repair their own confidence.

—Carol S. Dweck


Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed people can change the world. Indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.

–Margaret Mead

I not only use all the brains that I have, but all that I can borrow.

–Woodrow Wilson

Despite our cherished belief in the virtues of competition, study after study shows that nothing succeeds like cooperation.

–Alfie Kohn

The sea rises, the light fails, lovers cling to each other, and children cling to us. The moment we cease to hold each other, the moment we break faith with one another, the sea engulfs us and the light goes out.

–James Baldwin

Light is the task when many share the toil.


There are no problem children—only children with problems.



How is it that Daddy was never any support to me in my struggle? Why did he completely miss the mark when he wanted to offer me a helping hand? Daddy tried the wrong methods. He always talked to me as a child who was going through difficult phases. It sounds crazy, because Daddy’s the only one who has always taken me into his confidence, and no one but Daddy has given me the feeling that I’m sensible. But there’s one thing he’s omitted: you see, he hasn’t realized that for me the fight to get on top was more important than all else. I didn’t want to hear about ‘symptoms of your age,’ or ‘other girls,’ or ‘it wears off by itself;’ I didn’t want to be treated as a girl-like-all-others, but as Anne on her own merits.

–Anne Frank

I’m not a naughty brat. I’m little and I’m still learning. I get overwhelmed and frustrated just like you do. Because nobody is perfect. Help me. Guide me. Love me.

The Learning Station

Last year, Shaftsburg (Michigan) Elementary School counselor Teresa Severy met a new fourth grader for the first time. The bright and resilient little girl’s life had been colored by the horrors of neglect, substance abuse, and family incarcerations. ‘I met her as I do all my new students, and she shared much of what was in her heart,’ said Severy. Then, one morning, Severy found on her desk a box — clearly wrapped by a young person — and a card, addressed in the beautiful awkward cursive of a child. ‘The box contained a wind chime for my office, to add special music to my day,’ Severy related. ‘The card touched my heart.’ It read: ‘Thank you for being a special person who really cares to listen and hear me. I wish you a very happy Mother’s Day. Your friend…’ I wept when I read her words. Her mom was incarcerated, and [the child] was living with another family. One never knows that what we say or do can be significant in the life of a child.

—Gary Hopkins

There are no problem children—only children with problems.


One looks back with gratitude to those who touched our human feelings. Warmth is the vital element for the growing plant and for the soul of the child.

–Carl Jung

Listen to the whispers and you won’t have to hear the screams.

–Cherokee Saying

The most solid comfort one can fall back upon is the thought that the business of one’s life is to help in some small way to reduce the sum of ignorance, degradation, and misery on the face of this beautiful earth.

–George Eliot


Courage does not always roar. Sometimes, it is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying, ‘I will try again tomorrow.’

–Mary Anne Radmacher

Courage is not limited to the battlefield or the Indianapolis 500 or bravely catching a thief in your house. The real tests of courage are much quieter. They are the inner tests, like remaining faithful when nobody’s looking, like enduring pain when the room is empty, like standing alone when you’re misunderstood.

–Charles Swindoll

To see what is right, and not to do it, is want of courage or of principle.


The only thing we have to fear is fear itself—nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance.

–Franklin D. Roosevelt

We fear things in proportion to our ignorance of them.


It is curious—curious that physical courage should be so common in the world, and moral courage so rare.

–Mark Twain


Don’t become preoccupied with your child’s academic ability but instead teach them to sit with those sitting alone. Teach them to be kind. Teach them to offer their help. Teach them to be a friend to the lonely. Teach them to encourage others. Teach them to think about other people. Teach them to share. Teach them to look for the good. This is how they’ll change the world.


A boy doesn’t have to go to war to be a hero; he can say he doesn’t like pie when he sees there isn’t enough to go around.

—Ed Howe

This is the final test of a gentleman: his respect for those who can be of no possible service to him.

–William Lyon Phelps

Good breeding consists in concealing how much we think of ourselves and how little we think of the other person.

–Mark Twain

No one is useless in this world who lightens the burdens of another.

–Charles Dickens


Human intelligence is too rare and precious a thing to squander on a haphazard program of instruction.

—Philip H. Phenix

We must prepare students for their future not our past.

–David Thornburg

We are now at a point where we must educate our children in what no one knew yesterday, and prepare our schools for what no one knows yet.

–Margaret Mead

It is easier to move a cemetery than to affect a change in curriculum.

–Woodrow Wilson

The curriculum is so much necessary raw material, but warmth is the vital element for the growing plant and for the soul.

–Carl Jung

Grouping kids by age for instruction makes about as much pedagogical sense as grouping them by height.

—Deborah Ruf


Quotations yield the greatest insight from the fewest words.
—Dan L. Miller

One can be sad, alone, detached from family and friends, and the movies can fill a void. Film can provide one for a short period of time with an intimate relationship with characters who fully participate in all aspects of life. One becomes absorbed in a film and vicariously experiences life through characters created by gifted artists.

–Dan L. Miller

The most difficult students for school personnel to deal with are those students who truly do not care. As the old saying goes, ‘You can’t push a rope.’

–Dan L. Miller

When your business displaces your family, it’s time to find a new business.

–Dan L. Miller

The experience of reading a fine, old book cannot be duplicated by any electronic media today. A fine, old book appeals to all the senses as one carefully turns and fingers the fragile, yellowed pages; as one unites with the distant past with each whiff of the musty tome; and as the book virtually whispers to the reader with each stiff, crinkly turn of the delicate page.

–Dan L. Miller

Caring teachers, personal counseling, innovative instructional materials, and effective teaching techniques have little impact on students who are not in school to benefit from them.

–Dan L. Miller

My children are the most important aspect of my life, and the love of a child is the strongest love there is. You don’t actually realize it until you have a child. To me raising, nurturing and experiencing all that a child provides is the true meaning of a complete life.

—Dan L. Miller

Students who absent themselves from the classroom are students who have taken their first step toward failure.

—Dan L. Miller

The writing process crushes souls, and all writers seek solace in habits and paraphernalia to help them through the struggle….I, as writers everywhere, struggle with choices—an agreeable ambience, ideal illumination, the proper pencil, and music or silence.

–Dan L. Miller


If she’s not your first and last thought of the day, let her go. She deserves better.

–Dinesh Kumar Biran

Why do we close our eyes when we pray, cry, kiss or dream? Because the most beautiful things in life are not seen but felt by the heart.

—Denzel Washington

One may have a blazing hearth in one’s soul and yet no one ever came to sit by it. Passers-by see only a wisp of smoke from the chimney and continue on their way.

—Vincent Van Gogh

I’ve been single for a while and I have to say, it’s going very well. I think I might be the one.

—Rebel Circus

O love, O fire! once he drew

With one long kiss my whole soul through

My lips, as sunlight drinketh dew.

—Alfred, Lord Tennyson

Go and love someone exactly as they are and then watch how quickly they transform into the greatest, truest version of themselves. When one feels seen and appreciated in their own essence, one is instantly empowered.

—Wes Angelozzi

You will lose someone you can’t live without, and your heart will be badly broken, and the bad news is that you never completely get over the loss of your beloved. But this is also the good news. They live forever in your broken heart that doesn’t seal back up. And you come through. It’s like having a broken leg that never heals perfectly—that still hurts when the weather gets cold, but you learn to dance with the limp.

Anne Lamott


A wife who loses a husband is called a widow. A husband who loses a wife is called a widower. A child who loses his parents is called an orphan. But…there is no word for a parent who loses a child, that’s how awful the loss is!

—Jay Neugeboren


I would straighten your tie,

Smooth your collar,

Pick a bit of lint from your sleeve

Before you left for your day’s affairs

And I turned my attention to mine.

Today I brushed off a leaf

That had fallen on your name.

—Doris Alsup

I noticed an old doll baby with only one leg lying by the side of a Federal soldier just as it dropped from his pocket when he fell writhing in the agony of death. It was obviously a memento of some little loved one at home which he had brought so far with him and had worn close to his heart on this day of danger and death. It was strange to see that emblem of childhood, that token of a father’s love lying there amidst the dead and dying…I dismounted, picked it up and stuffed it back into the poor fellow’s cold bosom that it might rest with him in the bloody grave which was to be forever unknown to those who loved and mourned him in his distant home.

–Confederate Soldier Charles Minor Blackford

People disappear when they die. Their voice, their laughter, the warmth of their breath. Their flesh. Eventually their bones. All living memory of them ceases. This is both dreadful and natural. Yet for some there is an exception to this annihilation. For in the books they write, they continue to exist. We can rediscover them. Their humor, their tone of voice, their moods. Through the written word they can anger you or make you happy. They can comfort you. They can perplex you. They can alter you. All this, even though they are dead. Like flies in amber, like corpses frozen in the ice, that which according to the laws of nature should pass away is, by the miracle of ink on paper, preserved. It is a kind of magic.

—Diane Setterfield

You will lose someone you can’t live without, and your heart will be badly broken, and the bad news is that you never completely get over the loss of your beloved. But this is also the good news. They live forever in your broken heart that doesn’t seal back up. And you come through. It’s like having a broken leg that never heals perfectly—that still hurts when the weather gets cold, but you learn to dance with the limp.

Anne Lamott


When nothing seems to help, I go and look at a stonecutter hammering away at his rock perhaps a hundred times without as much as a crack showing in it. Yet at the hundred and first blow it will split in two, and I know it was not that blow that did it—but all that had gone before.

–Jacob Riis

Those on top of the mountain didn’t fall there.

–Vince Lombardi

The value of courage, persistence, and perseverance has rarely been illustrated more convincingly than in the life story of this man (his age appears in the column on the right):

Failed in business 22

Ran for Legislature—defeated 23

Again failed in business 24

Elected to Legislature 25

Sweetheart died 26

Had a nervous breakdown 27

Defeated for Speaker 29

Defeated for Elector 31

Defeated for Congress 34

Elected to Congress 37

Defeated for Congress 39

Defeated for Senate 46

Defeated for Vice President 47

Defeated for Senate 49

Elected President of the United States 51

That’s the record of Abraham Lincoln.


Genius is one percent inspiration and ninety-nine percent perspiration.

–Thomas Alva Edison

Many of life’s failures are men who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.

–Thomas A. Edison


I’m not a naughty brat. I’m little and I’m still learning. I get overwhelmed and frustrated just like you do. Because nobody is perfect. Help me. Guide me. Love me.

The Learning Station

The hearts of small children are delicate organs. A cruel beginning in this world can twist them into curious shapes. The heart of a child can shrink so that forever afterward it is hard and pitted as the seed of a peach. Or again, the heart of such a child may fester and swell until it is a misery to carry within the body, easily chafed and hurt by the most ordinary things.

–Carson McCullers

There is a mistaken notion prevailing among some parents that discipline is the same thing as punishment. It is not. Discipline comes from a Latin word meaning ‘to teach.’ The best discipline is that which teaches, not the kind that hurts.

–John Charles Wynn

I am not a product of my circumstances. I am a product of my decisions.

—Stephen R. Covey

There is not a single ill-doer who could not be turned to some good.

—Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Diogenes struck the father when the son swore.

–Robert Burton

Negative consequences stop misbehavior—that’s a given. But the key to changing behavior is the use of positive reinforcement.

–Lee Canter



I went to a party, Mom.

And remembered what you said.

You told me not to drink, Mom,

So I had a Sprite instead.

I felt proud of myself, The way you said I would,

That I didn’t drink and drive,

Though some friends said I should.

I made a healthy choice,

And your advice to me was right.

As the party finally ended,

And the kids drove out of sight.

I got into my car,

Sure to get home in one piece,

I never knew what was coming,

Mom something I expected least.

Now I’m lying on the pavement,

And I hear the policeman say,

‘The kid that caused this wreck was drunk,’

Mom, His voice seems far away.

My own blood’s all around me,

As I try hard not to cry.

I can hear the paramedic say,

‘This girl is going to die.’

I’m sure the guy had no idea,

While he was flying high,

Because he chose to drink and drive,

Now I would have to die.

So why do people do it, Mom,

Knowing that it ruins lives?

And now the pain is cutting me,

Like a hundred stabbing knives.

Tell sister not to be afraid, Mom,

Tell Daddy to be brave,

And when I go to heaven,

Put ‘Daddy’s Girl’ on my grave.

Someone should have taught him,

That it’s wrong to drink and drive.

Maybe if his parents had,

I’d still be alive.

My breath is getting shorter, Mom,

I’m getting really scared.

These are my final moments,

And I’m so unprepared.

I wish that you could hold me, Mom,

As I lie here and die.

I wish that I could say I love you, Mom.

So I love you and good-bye.

–Unknown (Printed by the Illinois Liquor Control Commission)

According to the NHTSA, more than 6,000 teens die each year from injuries resulting from car collisions, making it the number one killer of teens in the United States. Typical reasons include a lack of driving experience, poor vehicle control, risk-taking, and failure to wear seat belts.

Always drive as if a traffic cop were looking.


He who stops to look each way will live to drive another day.


All the safety devices on a car can be replaced by one careful driver.


A pedestrian may be wrong but he doesn’t deserve the death penalty.


In driving, one assumes the danger of destroying life, beginning with one’s own.

—Richard T. Kelly


It is hard to interest those who have everything in those who have nothing.

–Helen Keller

We were poor back then. Not living in a cardboard carton poor, not ‘we might have to eat the dog’ poor, but still poor. Poor like, no insurance poor, and going to McDonald’s was a really big excitement poor, wearing socks for gloves in the winter poor, and collecting nickels and dimes from the washing machine because we never got allowance, that kind of poor… poor enough to be nostalgic about poverty.

—Rebecca McNutt

The Golden Rule: He who has the gold makes the rules.

–Johnny Hart

Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen six, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds ought and six, result misery.

–Charles Dickens

It’s a kind of spiritual snobbery that makes people think they can be happy without money.

–Albert Camus

The only thing that hurts more than paying an income tax is not having to pay an income tax.

–Lord Thomas R. Duwar

The only people who claim that money is not important are people who have enough money so that they are relieved of the ugly burden of thinking about it.

–Joyce Carol Oates

Men do not realize how great an income thrift is.



No one has yet fully realized the wealth of sympathy, kindness, and generosity hidden in the soul of a child. The effort of every true education should be to unlock that treasure.

–Emma Goldman

Educate a man and you educate an individual—educate a woman and you educate a family.

–Agnes Cripps

A child miseducated is a child lost.

–John F. Kennedy

Education is the transmission of civilization.                   

–Will and Ariel Durant

We need to move beyond the idea that an education is something provided for us, and toward the idea that an education is something that we create for ourselves.

—Stephen Downes

All men who have turned out worth anything have had the chief hand in their own education.

—Sir Walter Scott

Education does not cease the day we leave the classroom, nor are teachers only those who lecture us in front of blackboards. Teachers come in all conceivable forms: the newspaper columnist who examines an issue in a way you have never seen before, the basketball coach who makes you truly understand the value of discipline and teamwork, the child who trots home from school and tells you something you never knew about astronomy, Guatemala, or snowflakes.

–Bridget Sullivan

Every child is different from every other and must be educated differently.

–Jean Jacques Rousseau


We need to stop looking to politicians to make our world better. Politicians don’t make the world a better place. Everything that’s ever made the world a better place has come from inventors, engineers, scientists, teachers, artists, builders, philosophers, healers, and people that choose love over hate.

—Don Freeman

The scientist explains that which exists; The engineer creates that which never was.

—Theodore von Karman

When you want to know how things really work, study them when they’re coming apart.

—William Gibson

There is nothing in machinery, there is nothing in embankments and railways and iron bridges and engineering devices to oblige them to be ugly. Ugliness is the measure of imperfection.

—H. G. Wells

Aviation is the branch of engineering that is least forgiving of mistakes.

—Freeman Dyson

The story of civilization is, in a sense, the story of engineering – that long and arduous struggle to make the forces of nature work for man’s good.

—L. Sprague de Camp

Failure is central to engineering. Every single calculation that an engineer makes is a failure calculation. Successful engineering is all about understanding how things break or fail.

—Henry Petroski

Science can amuse and fascinate us all, but it is engineering that changes the world.

—Isaac Asimov


Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could; some blunders and absurdities have crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day; you shall begin it serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense.

—Ralph Waldo Emerson

The man who fails to plan, plans to fail.                       

—Benjamin Franklin

When a child learns to walk and falls down 50 times, he never thinks to himself: ‘Maybe this isn’t for me.’


Failure is an event—not a person.

–Zig Ziglar

The gem cannot be polished without friction, nor man perfected without trials.

–Chinese Proverb


Educate a man and you educate an individual—educate a woman and you educate a family.

–Agnes Cripps

A daughter can metaphorically punch her mother in the face a million times, and mom won’t leave. If a daughter does this to her friends, they will leave. Teens act out at home, in part, because they are so comfortable with the love and security of home.

–Lauren Kessler

It’s not our job to toughen our children up to face a cruel and heartless world. It’s our job to raise children who will make the world a little less cruel and heartless.

—L. R. Knost

In truth a family is what you make it. It is made strong, not by the number of heads counted at the dinner table, but by the rituals you help family members create, by the memories you share, by the commitment of time, caring, and love you show to one another, and by the hopes of the future you have as individuals and as a unit.

—Marge Kennedy

Without a family, man, alone in the world, trembles with the cold.

–Andre Maurois

The rebellion is against time pollution, the feeling that the essence of what makes life worth living—the small moments, the special family getaways, the cookies in the oven, the weekend drives, the long dreamlike summers—so much of this has been taken from us, or we have given it up. For what? Hitachi stereos? Club Med? Company cars? Racquetball? For fifteen-hour days and lousy day care?

–Richard Louv


Preserve and treat food as you would your body, remembering that in time food will be your body.

—B. W. Richardson

It’s bizarre that the produce manager is more important to my children’s health than the pediatrician.

—Meryl Streep

Food is capable of feeding far more than a rumbling stomach. Food is life; our well-being demands it. Food is art and magic; it evokes emotion and colors memory, and in skilled hands, meals become greater than the sum of their ingredients. Food is self-evident; plucked right from the ground or vine or sea, its power to delight is immediate. Food is discovery; finding an untried spice or cuisine is for me like uncovering a new element. Food is evolution; how we interpret it remains ever fluid. Food is humanitarian: sharing it bridges cultures, making friends of strangers pleasantly surprised to learn how much common ground they ultimately share.

—Anthony Beal

We do children an enormous disservice when we assume that they cannot appreciate anything beyond drive through fare and nutritionally marginal, kid-targeted convenience foods. Our children are capable of consuming something that grew in a garden or on a tree and never saw a deep fryer. They are capable of making it through dinner at a sit-down restaurant with tablecloths and no climbing equipment. Children deserve quality nourishment.

—Victoria Moran

He who buys what he does not need steals from himself.

—Swedish Proverb

Because cooks love the social aspect of food, cooking for one is intrinsically interesting. A good meal is like a present, and it can feel goofy, at best, to give yourself a present. On the other hand, there is something life affirming in taking the trouble to feed yourself well, or even decently. Cooking for yourself allows you to be strange or decadent or both. The chances of liking what you make are high, but if it winds up being disgusting, you can always throw it away and order a pizza; no one else will know. In the end, the experimentation, the impulsiveness, and the invention that such conditions allow for will probably make you a better cook.

—Jenni Ferrari-Adler

The best thing about doing needlepoint for very small children is that they are so uncritical.  The don’t say things like, ‘I see you’ve missed some stitches over here on the leg, was that intentional?’ or ‘Was this creature blinded in a fight?’ They will clasp it in their little arms and love it besottedly, inseparably as the thing becomes more and more rancid.

—Carole Berman and Jennifer Lazarus

One is never over-dressed or underdressed with a Little Black Dress.

—Karl Lagerfeld

I have often said that I wish I had invented blue jeans: the most spectacular, the most practical, the most relaxed and nonchalant. They have expression, modesty, sex appeal, simplicity — all I hope for in my clothes.

—Yves Saint Laurent

She first peered into its fascinating cases of beetles and butterflies at the age of six, in the company of her father. She recalls her pity at each occupant pinned for display. It was no great leap to draw the same conclusion of ladies: similarly bound and trussed, pinned and contained, with the objective of being admired, in all their gaudy beauty.

—Emmanuelle de Maupassant

Today we live in a society that seems to be less and less concerned with reality. We drink instant coffee and reconstituted orange juice. We buy our vegetables on cardboard trays covered with plastic. But perhaps the most dehumanizing thing of all is that we have allowed the media to call us consumers–ugly. No! I don’t want to be a consumer. Anger consumes. Forest fires consume. Cancer consumes.

—Madeleine L’Engle

So many people imagine housekeeping to be boring, frustrating, repetitive, unintelligent drudgery. I cannot agree. In fact, having kept house, practiced law, taught, and done many other sorts of work, low and high-paid, I can assure you that it is actually lawyers who are most familiar with the experience of unintelligent drudgery.

—Cheryl Mendelson

People will forget what you said, forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.

—Maya Angelou

I think preparing food and feeding people brings nourishment not only to our bodies but to our spirits. Feeding people is a way of loving them, in the same way that feeding ourselves is a way of honoring our own createdness and fragility.

—Shauna Niequist


A film is never really good unless the camera is an eye in the head of a poet.

–Orson Welles

The movie is the imagination of mankind in action.

–Gilbert Seldes

The cinema has no boundaries. It is a ribbon of dreams.

–Orson Welles

The films made in the first half of the 20th century are in many ways superior to the films being made now. It wasn’t an industry forced by bankers and investors to pander to 18-year-olds. A film now has to fill vast numbers of seats. Studios have to show huge profits to the multinational corporations that own them. Not exactly like the old days of classic Hollywood.

–Mike Disa

Through the magic of motion pictures, someone who’s never left Peoria knows the softness of a Paris spring, the color of a Nile sunset, the sorts of vegetation one will find along the upper Amazon and that Big Ben has not yet gone digital.

–Vincent Canby

If I can make them laugh and through that laughter make this world seem just a little brighter, then I am satisfied.

–W. C. Fields

If you are lonely, dim the lights and put on a horror movie. After a while it won’t feel like you’re alone anymore.


I was watching Annie Hall on TV, and my girlfriend came home and started complaining about her office drama. She asked me, ‘Are you tuning me out for Annie Hall?’ I said, ‘Oh, I’m sorry. Was your story nominated for seven Academy Awards?’

—Sam Morril


If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart.

—Nelson Mandela

Math and science fields are not the only areas where we see the United States lagging behind. Less than 1 percent of American high school students study the critical foreign languages of Arabic, Chinese, Japanese, Korean or Russian, combined.

—Cathy McMorris

I have learned several languages because I refuse to accept any manmade differences between human beings.

–Maya Angelou

The Russian language, which is, as far as I can judge, the richest of all the European family, seems admirably adapted to express the most delicate shades of thought. Possessed of a marvelous conciseness and clearness, it can with a single word call up several ideas, to express which in another tongue whole phrases would be necessary.

—Prosper Mérimée

‘Seize the day’ drains dignity from ‘Carpe diem.’

—Willis Goth Regier

Why is it that the United States child whose family can send him to Spain for a year to learn Spanish is a genius, but the little Korean kid who doesn’t speak perfect English but already knows a second language has something wrong with him?

–Samuel Betances

You always lose when you translate, but there remains an echo of the original language. I had a professor at Harvard, Helen Vendler, who always said, ‘In translation, the music of the language is lost, but the magic of the meaning remains.’ I think an imprint of the language is still there. It’s like you’re covering an object with a piece of cloth, but you can still feel it. You don’t have direct access to it, but you can still feel its shape through that cloth.

–Jean Kwok


It is all right your saying you do not need other people, but there are a lot of people who need you.

–Sherwood Anderson

If you go looking for a friend, you’re going to find they’re very scarce. If you go out to be a friend, you’ll find them everywhere.

—Zig Ziglar

Be friends with everybody. When you have friends you will know there is somebody who will stand by you. You know the old saying, that if you have a single enemy you will find him everywhere. It doesn’t pay to make enemies. Lead the life that will make you kindly and friendly to every one about you, and you will be surprised what a happy life you will live.

–Charles M. Schwab

The person who tries to live alone will not succeed as a human being. His heart withers if it does not answer another heart. His mind shrinks away if he hears only the echoes of his own thoughts and finds no other inspiration.

–Pearl S. Buck

There is no doubt that paper is patient and as I don’t intend to show this cardboard- covered notebook, bearing the proud name of ‘diary,’ to anyone, unless I find a real friend, boy or girl, probably nobody cares. And now I come to the root of the matter, the reason for my starting a diary: it is that I have no such real friend.

–Anne Frank

If a friend is in trouble, don’t annoy him by asking if there is anything you can do. Think up something appropriate and do it.

–Edgar Watson Howe

You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get other people interested in you.

–Dale Carnegie

Don’t wait for others to be friendly—show them how!



In every outthrust headland, in every curving beach, in every grain of sand there is the story of the earth.

—Rachel Carson

The study of geography is about more than just memorizing places on a map. It’s about understanding the complexity of our world, appreciating the diversity of cultures that exists across continents. And in the end, it’s about using all that knowledge to help bridge divides and bring people together.

—Barack Obama

The world belongs to me because I understand it.

–Honoré de Balzac

Viewed from the distance of the moon, the astonishing thing about the Earth, catching the breath, is that it is alive. The photographs show the dry, pounded surface of the moon in the foreground, dead as an old bone. Aloft, floating free beneath the moist, gleaming membrane of bright blue sky, is the rising Earth, the only exuberant thing in this part of the cosmos. If you could look long enough, you would see the swirling of the great rifts of white cloud, covering and uncovering the half-hidden masses of land. If you had been looking a long, geologic time, you could have seen the continents themselves in motion, drifting apart on their crustal plates, held aloft by the fire beneath. It has the organized, self-contented look of a live creature, full of information, marvelously skilled in handling the sun.

–Lewis Thomas

Why do Americans have such a tough time understanding the rest of the world, and, from the rest of the world’s perspective, why are Americans so damn hard to understand? Aaron David Miller…writes, ‘The United States is the only great power in the history of the world that has had the luxury of having nonpredatory neighbors to its north and south….the luxury of America’s circumstances’ has made its people, by and large, optimistic and idealistic, and has inclined them to self-delusion when dealing with societies where ethnic, religious, and social hatreds are embedded deep in the DNA. Geography has indulged what Miller calls the Americans’ ‘schizophrenic’ blend of isolationist ambivalence and missionary arrogance. But they have to remember, he says, that ‘not everyone is lucky enough to have Canadians, Mexicans, and fish for neighbors.’

–Christopher Dickey


The world is more malleable than you think and it’s waiting for you to hammer it into shape…That’s what this degree of yours is—a blunt instrument. So go forth and build something with it.


The man who graduates to-day and stops learning tomorrow is uneducated the day after.

–Newton D. Baker

That diploma you hold in your hands today is really just your learner’s permit for the rest of the drive through life. Remember, you don’t have to be smarter than the next person, all you have to do is be willing to work harder than the next person.

—Jimmy Iovine

A graduation ceremony is an event where the commencement speaker tells thousands of students dressed in identical caps and gowns that ‘individuality’ is the key to success.

—Robert Orben

Your families are extremely proud of you. You can’t imagine the sense of relief they are experiencing. This would be a most opportune time to ask for money.

—Gary Bolding

A BMW can’t take you as far as a diploma.

—Joyce A. Myers

Senioritis (n.) A crippling disease that strikes high school seniors. Symptoms: laziness, an over-excessive wearing of track pants, and sweatshirts. Lack of studying, repeated absences, and a dismissive attitude. The only known cure is a phenomenon known as Graduation.

—Urban Dictionary

Right now about 22 percent of the people in the world graduate high school or the equivalent. That’s pathetic.

–Jose Ferreira


 With guns you can kill terrorists. With education, you can kill terrorism.

—Malala Yousafzai

More Americans have died from gunshots in the last 50 years than in all of the wars in American history.
Since 1968, more than 1.5 million Americans have died in gun-related incidents, according to data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. By comparison, approximately 1.2 million service members have been killed in every war in U.S. history, according to estimates from the Department of Veterans Affairs and, a website that maintains an ongoing database of casualties from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

—Chelsea Bailey

After every mass shooting, we hear non-stop talk about gun rights. Loud voices site the Second Amendment as the right to have a gun. What isn’t talked about is the rights of all those dead people who were assaulted by the one with the gun. And there are many; we suffer around 30,000 deaths per year from guns. But the ones gunned down also have constitutional rights, the right to ‘life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.’ When will this country honor those rights?

—Lee Knohl

Compared to 22 other high-income nations, the U.S. gun-related murder rate is 25 times higher. Although it has half the population of the other 22 nations combined, the U.S. had 82 percent of all gun deaths, 90 percent of all women killed by guns, 91 percent of children under 14 and 92 percent of young people between ages 15 and 24 killed by guns. In 2010, gun violence cost U.S. taxpayers approximately $516 million in direct hospital costs.


We look to statistics for reassurance in these types of situations. Here is one: 100% of mass shootings have been enabled by access to guns. I can guarantee that even if there were a genotype shared by the mass shooters, which there will not be, none of the killings would have happened if they didn’t have guns. 

Adam Rutherford

We lose eight children and teenagers to gun violence every day. If a mysterious virus suddenly started killing eight of our children every day, America would

mobilize teams of doctors and public health officials. We would move heaven and earth until we found a way to protect our children. But not with gun violence.

—Senator Elizabeth Warren


I asked professors who teach the meaning of life to tell me what is happiness. And I went to famous executives who boss the work of thousands of men. They all shook their heads and gave me a smile as though I was trying to fool with them. And then one Sunday afternoon I wandered out along the DesPlaines River and I saw a crowd of Hungarians under the trees with their women and children and a keg of beer and an accordion.

–Carl Sandburg

Choose your life’s mate carefully. From this one decision will come 90 percent of all your happiness or misery.

—H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

Three grand essentials to happiness in this life are something to do, something to love, and something to hope for.

–Joseph Addison

I am 100% responsible for my own happiness. It is a state of mind cultivated by my choices and habits, not by things or people. Yes, my children make me happy. Yes, sitting at the beach and watching a sunset makes me happy. But I don’t ever want to make the mistake of thinking my happiness is dependent on something—a different job, more money, another child, wood floors, a remodeled bathroom.

–Kelle Hampton

We have no more right to consume happiness without producing it than to consume wealth without producing it.

–George Bernard Shaw

There is no psychiatrist in the world like a puppy licking your face.

—Ben Williams


Humans look just like livestock now. We achieve a state of buttery plumpness before we’ve even reached sexual maturity. We experience powerful cravings for food that is slowly making us sick. We are…programmed to eat the wrong food. We aren’t born calorie zombies, but that’s what we have become.

—Mark Schatzker

People who don’t know how to keep themselves healthy ought to have the decency to get themselves buried, and not waste time about it.

—Henrik Ibsen

Let’s face it, in America today we don’t have a health care system, we have a sick care system. We wait until people become obese, develop chronic diseases, or become disabled – and then we spend untold hundreds of billions annually to try to make them better.

–Tom Harkin

Health is more than the absence of disease. Health is about jobs and employment, education, the environment, and all of those things that go into making us healthy.

—Joycelyn Elders

If you ruin your body, where will you live?



Civilization is a stream with banks. The stream is sometimes filled with blood from people killing stealing, shouting and doing the things historians usually record, while on the banks, unnoticed people build homes, make love, raise children, sing songs, write poetry and even whittle statues. The story of civilization is the story of what happened on the banks. Historians are pessimists because they ignore the banks for the river.

–Will Durant

The historian will tell you what happened. The novelist will tell you what it felt like.

—E. L. Doctorow

History gives us the facts, sort of, but from literary works we can learn what the past smelled like, sounded like, and felt like, the forgotten gritty details of a lost era. Literature brings us as close as we can come to reinhabiting the past. By reclaiming this use of literature in the classroom, perhaps we can move away from the political agitation that has been our bread and butter—or porridge and hardtack— for the last 30 years.

—Scott Herring

Great novelists are the true historians of the times in which they live. Stop and think about it for a minute and I’m sure you’ll find that you didn’t get your impressions of what life was like here and abroad in the last 300 years from the history books—but from the novels of such literary titans as Hardy, Dostoevsky, Dickens, Sinclair Lewis, Jane Austen, and Tolstoy. Writers like these had a kind of extrasensory perception which enabled them to see beneath the surface of the age—and, of course, the genius to bring people and events to life in stories that enthralled readers of their own time as well as later generations.

–Bennett Cerf

There are more valid facts and details in works of art than there are in history books.

–Charlie Chaplin

That men do not learn from history is the most important of all lessons that history has to teach.

–Aldous Huxley


Do what you do. This Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, New Year’s Eve, Twelfth Night, Valentine’s Day, Mardi Gras, St. Paddy’s Day, and ever day henceforth. Just do what you do. Live out your life and your traditions on your own terms. If it offends others, so be it. That’s their problem.

–Chris Rose

Easter is… Joining in a birdsong,

Eying an early sunrise,

Smelling yellow daffodils,

Unbolting windows and doors,

Skipping through meadows,

Cuddling newborns,

Hoping, believing,

Reviving spent life,

Inhaling fresh air,

Sprinkling seeds along furrows,

Tracking in the mud.

Easter is the soul’s first taste of spring.

—Richelle E. Goodrich

For children, diversity needs to be real and not merely relegated to learning the names of the usual suspects during Black History Month or enjoying south-of-the border cuisine on Cinco de Mayo. It means talking to and spending time with kids not like them so that they may discover those kids are in fact just like them.

—John Ridley

Memorial Day isn’t just about honoring veterans, its honoring those who lost their lives. Veterans had the fortune of coming home. For us, that’s a reminder of when we come home we still have a responsibility to serve. It’s a continuation of service that honors our country and those who fell defending it.

—Pete Hegseth

You have to love a nation that celebrates its independence every July 4, not with a parade of guns, tanks, and soldiers who file by the White House in a show of strength and muscle, but with family picnics where kids throw Frisbees, the potato salad gets iffy, and the flies die from happiness. You may think you have overeaten, but it is patriotism.

—Erma Bombeck

If Christopher Columbus is the man whom, according to the common historical view, shut the door upon the Middle Ages and inaugurated a new world and a new age, the moment when those three paltry vessels left that Spanish harbour is one of the most epoch-making in the history of humanity.

–Jacob Wassermann

There is a child in every one of us who is still a trick-or-treater looking for a brightly-lit front porch.

—Robert Brault

In November, people are good to each other. They carry pies to each other’s homes and talk by crackling woodstoves, sipping mellow cider. They travel very far on a special November day just to share a meal with one another and to give thanks for their many blessings —for the food on their tables and the babies in their arms.

–Cynthia Rylant

Just as Hanukkah candles are lighted one by one from a single flame, so the tale of the miracle is passed from one man to another, from one house to another, and to the whole House of Israel throughout the generations.

–Judah Leon Magnes

What I don’t like about office Christmas parties is looking for a job the next day.

—Phyllis Diller


When truth is buried, it grows, it chokes, it gathers such explosive force that on the day it breaks out, it blows everything up with it.

–Emile Zola

The truth might hurt for a little while…but a lie hurts forever.

—Ged Backland

A mistake is something that happens accidentally. Cheating and lying are not accidents; they are choices.


Be honest. This applies to every area of your life. Sketchiness is not an attractive trait. No more trying to cover up your baggage, sweeping things under the rug, withholding truth, blatant lying, or even telling seemingly ‘harmless’ white lies or half-truths – release the need to lie completely! Start NOW.

—Alaric Hutchinson

The big problem with lying is that it becomes an addiction. When you get away with a lie it often drives you to continue your deceptions, and in the process, we ruin relationships, hurt others, lose our integrity, and lose our peace. Truth becomes a feared enemy of the liar. It’s a sick and tragic cycle that doesn’t ever have a happy ending.

—Dawson McAllister


I started noticing racism as a teenager….We were treated differently and it was a bitter and hurtful experience. I was treated badly because I was poor, Mexican American, and a girl.

–Dolores Huerta

Blessed is the influence of one true, loving human soul on another.

–George Eliot

My motto for the home, in education as in life, is this: For heaven’s sake, let people live their own lives. It is an attitude that fits any situation.

–A. S. Neill

Prejudices are rarely overcome by argument; not being founded on reason, they cannot be destroyed by logic.

–Tryon Edwards

Prejudice is a great time saver. You can form opinions without having to get the facts.

–E. B. White

Empathy is as important as literacy. When we read with a child, we are doing so much more than teaching him to read or instilling in her a love of language. We are doing something that I believe is just as powerful, and it is something that we are losing as a culture: By reading with a child, we are teaching that child to be human.

—Anna Dewdney


Could Hamlet have been written by a committee or the Mona Lisa painted by a club? Could the New Testament have been composed as a conference report? Creative ideas do not spring from groups. They spring from individuals.

–A. Whitney Griswold

It is the mind which creates the world about us, and even though we stand side by side in the same meadow, my eyes will never see what is beheld by yours, my heart will never stir to the emotions with which yours is touched.

–George Gissing

Do not follow where the path may lead. Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.

—Muriel Strode

Children are born as individuals. If we fail to see that, if we see them as clay to be molded in any shape we like, the tougher ones will fight back and end up spiteful and wild, while the less strong will lose that uniqueness they were born with.

–Melvin Konner

I live in my own little world, but it’s OK. They know me here.

—Lauren Myracle

There is no such thing as a weird human being. It’s just that some people require more understanding than others.

–Tom Robbins

He who joyfully marches to music in rank and file has already earned my contempt. He has been given a large brain by mistake, since for him the spinal cord would suffice.

–Albert Einstein


We have a new generation that is tool illiterate. Most young people don’t have any idea how to use a crescent wrench or even a hammer. It’s going to affect society. It’s such a shame that school systems took away shop classes. Kids graduate from high school now without the ability to read a ruler. If you can’t read a ruler, how are you going to measure anything? If you can’t measure anything, how can you get a job making anything?

—John Ratzenberger

There is a missing link in the chain of education and training that runs from the elementary school to the university doctoral thesis. This missing link has resulted in a void in our manpower resources that is becoming more critical every day. The missing link is an advanced, more sophisticated technical education that combines the abilities of the mind with the capabilities of the hands. The void in manpower resources is the lack of a class of personnel sufficiently hand-skilled to translate abstract ideas into three-dimensional reality.

—C. A. Widen

Welder: My craft allows me to build anything in the world. I possess a skill set 98% of the population can’t do. I’m the last of a dying breed of people who aren’t afraid to get their hands dirty. Greatest craft in the world.

—Welding Poster

Even with the procession of headlights on the slow moving highway, the wintry sky is dark. Then twenty feet up to the left on a steel girder, a support for the new sky-train system, comes flashes like a firework. Only these golden yellow sparks originate from a fixed in position, and fly outwards into the night, a fiery flower. Their intense bursts illuminate the face shield of the welder, who is no doubt working overtime tonight. The joint fused will bear the weight of thousands of passenger trains and bring new residents and commerce to the area. It will help bring the mass transit we all need. Yet these sparks that fly tonight are forgotten as soon as they fade to black.


You can have self-taught ‘shade tree welders’ in any garage, but it takes a welding artist to do the job correctly.

—James Howlett and Brad Huff

The difference between electricity and electronics is the difference between a toaster and a television set.

—Isaac Asimov

There is no shame in breaking something, only in not being able to fix it.

—Hope Jahren


I cried because I had no shoes until I met a man who had no feet.

—Helen Keller

The past is a place of reference, not a place of residence; the past is a place of learning, not a place of living.

—Roy T. Bennett

Every moment is a fresh beginning.

—T. S. Eliot

One small crack does not mean you are broken. It means that you were put to the test & you didn’t fall apart.

—Linda Poindexter

Pain is temporary. It may last a minute, or an hour, or a day, or a year, but eventually it will subside and something else will take its place. If I quit, however, it lasts forever.

—Lance Armstrong


I still believe that if your aim is to change the world, journalism is a more immediate short-term weapon.

–Tom Stoppard

A drop of ink makes thousands think.

–Robert S. Abbott

Of all the myths of journalism, objectivity is the greatest.

–Bill Moyers

We don’t print the truth. We don’t pretend to print the truth. We print what people tell us. It’s up to the public to decide what’s true.

–Benjamin C. Bradlee

Sunshine is the best disinfectant.

—Louis Brandeis


When the man who knows all about the fruit fly chromosomes finds himself sitting next to an authority on Beowulf…there may be an uneasy silence.

–Brand Blanshard

I believe all suffering is caused by ignorance.

—Dalai Lama

Everyone you will ever meet knows something you don’t.

—Bill Nye

The simplest schoolboy is now familiar with truths for which Archimedes would have given his life.

—Ernest Renan

It is wrong always, everywhere, and for everyone, to believe anything upon insufficient evidence.

—William James


Perhaps of all the creations of man language is the most astonishing.

–Lytton Strachey

Slang is a language that rolls up its sleeves, spits on its hands and goes to work.

–Carl Sandburg

The test of your command of language is whether you can describe a spiral staircase or a bathing beauty without using your hands.


‘A picture is worth ten thousand words,’ goes the time worn Chinese maxim. But one writer tartly said, ‘It takes words to say that.’

–Leo Rosten

They sing. They hurt. They teach. They sanctify. They were man’s first, immeasurable feat of magic. They liberated us from ignorance and our barbarous past, for without these marvelous scribbles which build letters into words, words into sentences, sentences into systems and sciences and creeds, man would be forever confined to the self-isolated prison of the scuttle fish or the chimpanzee.

–Leo Rosten

The limits of my language are the limits of my mind. All I know is what I have words for.

–Ludwig Wittgenstein

I used to think my vocabulary was good. But then I got a thesaurus…Now I think my vocabulary is exemplary.

—Matt Maran


If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.

—John Quincy Adams

Leaders are visionaries with a poorly developed sense of fear and no concept of the odds against them.

—Robert Jarvik

If you want to build a ship, don’t drum up people to collect wood and don’t assign them tasks and work, but rather teach them to long for the endless immensity of the sea.

—Antoine de Saint-Exupery

It is frequently a misfortune to have very brilliant men in charge of affairs; they expect too much of ordinary men.


You can only govern men by serving them. The rule is without exception.

–Victor Cousin


Somewhere, something incredible is waiting to be known.

–Carl Sagan

It is no profit to have learned well, if you neglect to do well.

–Publilius Syrus

I have never met a man so ignorant that I couldn’t learn something from him.

–Galileo Galilei

If someone had told me I would be Pope one day, I would have studied harder.

–Pope John Paul I

We Learn:

     10% of what we read

     20% of what we hear

     30% of what we see

     50% of what we both see and hear.


     70% of what is discussed with others

     80% of what we experience personally

     90% of what we TEACH someone else.

–William Glasser

When confronted with the fact that he had not memorized the Periodic Table of Elements, Einstein replied, ‘I never memorize anything I can look up!’

–Albert Einstein


There is not such a cradle of democracy upon the earth as the Free Public Library, this republic of letters, where neither rank, office, nor wealth receives the slightest consideration.

—Andrew Carnegie

Libraries are the concert halls of the finest voices gathered from all times and places.

–J. P. Richter

My grandma always said that God made libraries so that people didn’t have any excuse to be stupid.

—Joan Bauer

His library was a fine dark place bricked with books, so anything could happen there and always did. All you had to do was pull a book from the shelf and open it and suddenly the darkness was not so dark anymore.

—Ray Bradbury

A library outranks any other one thing a community can do to benefit its people. It is a never failing spring in the desert.

—Andrew Carnegie

(A library) is a city of necromancers…in which they raise the dead….Do I want to speak to Cicero? I invoke him. Do I want to chat in the Athenian market-place, and hear news two thousand years old? I write down my charm on a slip of paper, and a grave magician calls me up Aristophanes, etc; it is a world beyond the grave, a land of ghosts.

–E. Bulwer-Lytton

It’s funny that we think of libraries as quiet demure places where we are shushed by dusty, bun-balancing, bespectacled women. The truth is libraries are raucous clubhouses for free speech, controversy and community. Librarians have stood up to the Patriot Act, sat down with noisy toddlers and reached out to illiterate adults. Libraries can never be shushed.

—Paula Poundstone


The boy and girl going hand in hand through a meadow; the mother washing her baby; the sweet simple things in life. We have almost lost track of them. On the one side, we overintellectualize everything; on the other hand, we are overmechanized. We can understand the danger of the atomic bomb, but the danger of our misunderstanding the meaning of life is much more serious.

–Edward Steichen

The coolness of sheets, the warmth of blankets, the look of the little blue flames dancing on the top of a fire of hard coal, the taste of bread, or milk, or honey, or wine or of oil, of well-baked potatoes, or earth-tasting turnips!—the taste of the airs, dry or moist, that blow in through our opened windows, the look of the night-sky, the sounds of twilight or of dawn, the hoarse monotone of a distant pine-wood or of pebble-fretted waves—all these things as one feels them are materials, eternal and yet fleeting, of the art of being alive upon the earth.

—John Cowper Powys

I still think the most important things that happen to us are the smallest things—eating supper together, bedtime, planting flowers, sitting on a porch on summer nights, feeding the birds….those small things make the difference between a rich and good life or an empty one.

–Cynthia Rylant

The preciousness of life becomes especially profound when you’ve held a dying child in your arms and look into the faces of parents, their eyes weary from sleepless hours of pacing waiting rooms. I’ve witnessed the unbendable spirit of the children, whose strength and optimism burns within them. Only then do you understand the real and fragile beauty of life.

–Marlo Thomas

When I was 5 years old, my mother always told me that happiness was the key to life. When I went to school, they asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up. I wrote down ‘happy’. They told me I didn’t understand the assignment, and I told them they didn’t understand life.

—John Lennon

No man has tasted the full flavor of life until he has known poverty, love, and war.

–O. Henry


It is impossible to overemphasize the immense need human beings have to be really listened to.

–Paul Tournier

Being listened to and heard is one of the greatest desires of the human heart. And those who learn to listen are the most loved and respected.

—Richard Carlson

The greatest compliment that was ever paid me was when one asked me what I thought, and attended to my answer.

—Henry David Thoreau

You cannot truly listen to anyone and do anything else at the same time.

—M. Scott Peck

A good listener is not only popular everywhere, but after a while he knows something.

–Wilson Mizner


Again and again I have been attacked for looseness, lack of beauty in my prose, and the one attacking me used, as the vehicle of attack, prose I would have been ashamed to write.

  –Sherwood Anderson

If we wish to know the force of human genius, we should read Shakespeare,

If we wish to see the insignificance of human learning, we may study his commentators.

–William Hazlitt

The public is the only critic whose opinion is worth anything at all.

–Mark Twain

The important thing is that you make sure that neither the favorable nor the unfavorable critics move into your head and take part in the composition of your next work.

–Thornton Wilder

The person who is never criticized is not breathing.


It would be idle to deny that a word of praise, a word of thanks, sometimes a word of criticism, have been powerful factors in the lives of men of genius. We know how profoundly Lord Byron was affected by the letter of a consumptive girl written simply and soberly, signed with initials only, seeking no notice and giving no address; but saying in a few candid words that the writer wished before she died to thank the poet for the rapture his poems had given her.

–Agnes Repplier


What does literature do better than anything else? It provides a detailed representation of the inner experience of being alive in a given time and place.

—Elif Batuman

The reading of all good books is like conversation with the finest men of past centuries.

—René Descartes

The historian will tell you what happened. The novelist will tell you what it felt like.

—E. L. Doctorow

All modern American literature comes from one book by Mark Twain called Huckleberry Finn…American writing comes from that. There was nothing before. There has been nothing as good since.

–Ernest Hemingway

I would dare say that Walden and Huckleberry Finn are the two books that reflect most deeply and most clearly the basic tensions involved in being an American.

–Clifton Fadiman

The total absence of humor from the Bible is one of the most singular things in all literature.

–Alfred North Whitehead

Literature is a part of life. Literature is experience. What we read in books becomes as much a part of us as the food we eat.

–Wallace A. Bacon

Psychologists suppose that life teaches us what we know, for better or worse, but it’s most often from fiction that we form our attitudes about life. If we waited for life to teach us about romantic love, for example, we might never learn anything about it at all.

–Michael Korda


Today, after I watched my dog get run over by a car, I sat on the side of the road holding him and crying.  And just before he died, he licked the tears off my face. 


I love you,

Not only for what you are,

But for what I am

When I am with you.

–Roy Croft

I’m not a naughty brat. I’m little and I’m still learning. I get overwhelmed and frustrated just like you do. Because nobody is perfect. Help me. Guide me. Love me.

The Learning Station

You cannot touch love…but you can feel the sweetness that it pours into everything.

–Anne Sullivan

Love comes in at the eye.

–W. B. Yeats

Love is when you look into someone’s eyes and see their heart.

—Jill Petty

Don’t fall in love with the most beautiful girl;

Fall in love with the girl that makes your world the most beautiful.


Love is not something you feel. It’s something you do.

—David Wilkerson

Of all ghosts the ghosts of our old loves are the worst.

—Arthur Conan Doyle

You don’t know what unconditional love is. You may say you do, but if you don’t have a child, you don’t know what that is. But when you experience it, it is the most fulfilling ever.

—Regina King


‘Try to handle each piece of paper only once.’ Every time you pick up a piece of paper needing your action, failing to act only means you’ll have to double your time and energy spent on it by picking it up again.

   –Michael LeBoeuf

A school without a public relations program is like winking at a girl in the dark. You know what you’re doing, but no one else does.

–Steuart Henderson Britt

High expectations are the key to everything. 

–Sam Walton

What gets measured gets done.

—Tom Peters

Be decisive. Right or wrong, make a decision. The road of life is paved with flat squirrels who couldn’t make a decision.


Put up with it and you will get more of it.

–Lynne Deal

It is the greatest good to the greatest number which is the measure of right and wrong.

–Jeremy Bentham


Marry your best friend. I do not say that lightly. Really, truly find the strongest, happiest friendship in the person you fall in love with. Someone who speaks highly of you. Someone you can laugh with. The kind of laughs that make your belly ache, and your nose snort. The embarrassing, earnest, healing kind of laughs. Wit is important. Life is too short not to love someone who lets you be a fool with them. Make sure they are somebody who lets you cry, too. Despair will come. Find someone that you want to be there with you through those times. Most importantly, marry the one that makes passion, love, and madness combine and course through you. A love that will never dilute – even when the waters get deep, and dark.

—N’tima Preusser


Most people get married believing a myth that marriage is a beautiful box full of all the things they have longed for: companionship, intimacy, friendship etc. The truth is that marriage at the start is an empty box. You must put something in before you can take anything out. There is no love in marriage. Love is in people. And people put love in marriage. There is no romance in marriage. You have to infuse it into your marriage. A couple must learn the art and form the habit of giving, loving, serving, praising, of keeping the box full. If you take out more than you put in, the box will be empty.


The young man who wants to marry happily should pick out a good mother and marry one of her daughters—any one will do.

–J. Ogden Armour

As Anne-Marie puts it in her new book, Unfinished Business, ‘This is the dirty little secret that women leaders who come together in places like Fortune magazine’s annual Most Powerful Women Summit don’t talk about: the necessity of a primary caregiver spouse.’ A female business executive willing to do what it takes to get to the top—go on every trip, meet every client, accept every promotion, even pick up and move to a new location when asked—needs what male CEOs have always had: a spouse who bears most of the burden at home.

—Andrew Moravcsik

You marry the person who is available when you are most vulnerable.

–K. Berwick

When one thinks how many people there are that one does not in the least want to marry, and how many there are that do not in the least want to marry one, and how small one’s social circle really is, any marriage at all seems a miracle.

–Barry Pain

All husbands are alike, but they have different faces so you can tell them apart.

–Ogden Nash


Students never think it can be the teacher’s fault and so I thought I was stupid. I was frustrated and would come home and cry because I couldn’t do it. Then we got a new teacher who made math accessible. That made all the difference and I learned that it’s how you present it that makes it scary or friendly.

—Danica McKellar

A good graph is worth a thousand words.

–Dennis Johnston

How to do math:

1. Write down the problem.

2. Cry.

—T-Shirt Slogan

Never try to walk across a river just because it has an average depth of four feet.

–Milton Friedman

What math education will be for one child for one year will depend on what the child’s teacher believes, knows and does—and doesn’t believe, doesn’t know and doesn’t do.

–Eric Muller

If you don’t make mistakes, you’re not working on hard enough problems. And that’s a big mistake

–Frank Wilczek

Stand firm in your refusal to remain conscious during algebra. In real life, I assure you, there is no such thing as algebra.

–Fran Leibowitz


My mom should make eye contact with me when she talks to me. I used to watch TV with my dad, but now he has his iPad, and I watch by myself.

—Child Interviewed by Linda Stone

Books are no more threatened by Kindle than stairs by elevators.

—Stephen Fry

The day is coming, and it ain’t going to be long, when you ain’t even gonna have to leave your living room. No more schools, nor more bodegas, no more tabernacles, no more cineplexes. You’re going to snuggle up to your fiber optics baby and bliss out.

—Andrew Schneider

When Sherry Turkle, the MIT clinical psychologist and author, interviewed college students, they said texting was causing friction in their face-to-face interactions. While hanging out with friends they’d be texting surreptitiously at the same time, pretending to maintain eye contact but mentally somewhere else. The new form of communication was fun, sure, but it was colliding with—and eroding—the old one.

—Clive Thompson

Television is chewing gum for the eyes.

–Frank Lloyd Wright


I stationed myself by the side of the road, along which the slaves, amounting to three hundred and fifty, were to pass. The purchaser of my wife was a Methodist minister, who was about starting for North Carolina. Pretty soon five wagon-loads of little children passed, and looking at the foremost one, what should I see but a little child, pointing its tiny hand towards me, exclaiming, ‘There’s my father; I knew he would come and bid me good-bye.’ It was my eldest child! Soon the gang approached in which my wife was chained. I looked, and beheld her familiar face; but O, reader, that glance of agony! may God spare me ever again enduring the excruciating horror of that moment! She passed, and came near to where I stood. I seized hold of her hand, intending to bid her farewell; but words failed me; the gift of utterance had fled, and I remained speechless. I followed her for some distance, with her hand grasped in mine, as if to save her from her fate, but I could not speak, and I was obliged to turn away in silence.

–Virginia slave Henry Brown (1816-1897)

Today in downtown San Diego, I watched a blue collar Mexican man get harassed for being Mexican. It was a blatant act of discrimination. And the man actually began crying. As he left the office building, he took off his jacket. His t-shirt underneath read, ‘I love the USA!’


The ultimate tragedy is not the oppression and cruelty by the bad people but the silence over that by the good people.

–Martin Luther King, Jr.

I am an invisible man…I am a man of substance, of flesh and bone, fiber and liquids—and I might even be said to possess a mind. I am invisible, understand, simply because people refuse to see me.

–Ralph Ellison (1913-1994)

Race prejudice is not only a shadow over the colored—it is a shadow over all of us, and the shadow is darkest over those who feel it least and allow its evil effects to go on.

–Pearl S. Buck

What happens to a dream deferred?

     Does it dry up

     like a raisin in the sun?…

     Or does it explode?

–Langston Hughes


Don’t let the tall weeds cast a shadow on the beautiful flowers in your garden.

—Steve Maraboli

Your problem isn’t the problem. Your reaction is the problem.

—Ann Brashares

Just when the caterpillar thought the world was ending, he turned into a butterfly.

—Barbara Haines Howett

You don’t drown by falling into water. You only drown if you stay there.

—Zig Ziglar

Stand up to your obstacles and do something about them. You will find that they haven’t half the strength you think they have.

—Norman Vincent Peale

People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing – that’s why we recommend it daily.

—Zig Ziglar


After a stirring concert at New York’s outdoor Lewissohn Stadium when Marian Anderson had sung encore after encore, a thousand people crowded around the backstage entrance, asking only a glimpse of the woman who had moved them so deeply. In response to continued calls, the great singer stepped out onto the porch, still wearing her white, concert gown. She stood silent and motionless for a moment, then said quietly to the crowd, ‘Thank you for letting me sing.’

—Carolyn Roland

When Spielberg first showed John Williams a cut of Schindler’s List, Williams was so moved he had to take a walk outside to collect himself. Upon his return, Williams told Spielberg he deserved a better composer. Spielberg replied, ‘I know, but they’re all dead.’


The Babje flute, fashioned from the femur of a bear, has been carbon-dated to 40,000 years old. So how far back were we making drums or just shouting and clapping? As some anthropologists put it: ‘We sang before we spoke.’

—Zoe Cormier

Back in the 1970s and ’80s, most professional orchestras transitioned one by one to ‘blind’ auditions, in which each musician seeking a job performed from behind a screen. The move was made in part to stop conductors from favoring former students, which it did. But is also produced another result: the proportion of women winning spots in the most-prestigious orchestras shot up fivefold, notably when they played instruments typically identified closely with men.

–Don Peck

Amateurs practice until they can get it right; professionals practice until they can’t get it wrong.

–Harold Craxton

If I don’t practice one day, I know it; if I don’t practice two days, the critics know it; and if I don’t practice for three days, everyone knows it.

–Peter Tchaikovsky


When I look into the eyes of an animal, I do not see an animal. I see a living being. I see a friend. I feel a soul.

—A. D. Williams

Teach a child to play solitaire, and she’ll be able to entertain herself when there’s no one around. Teach her tennis, and she’ll know what to do when she’s on a court. But raise her to feel comfortable in nature, and the whole planet is her home.

–Joyce Maynard

One can get just as much exultation in losing oneself in a little thing as in a big one. It is nice to think how one can be recklessly lost in a daisy.

–Anne Morrow Lindbergh

Think of the fierce energy concentrated in an acorn! You bury it in the ground, and it explodes into a giant oak! Bury a sheep, and nothing happens but decay!

–George Bernard Shaw

We have not inherited the Earth from our fathers—we are borrowing it from our children.

–Chief Seattle


If it were not for hopes, the heart would break.

–Thomas Fuller

There is only one optimist. He has been here since man has been on this earth, and that is ‘man’ himself. If we hadn’t had such a magnificent optimism to carry us through all these things, we wouldn’t be here. We have survived everything, and we have only survived it on our optimism.

–Edward Steichen

Although the world is full of suffering, it is full also of the overcoming of it.

–Helen Keller

Early in life I decided that I would not be overcome by events. My philosophy has been that regardless of the circumstances, I shall not be vanquished, but will try to be happy. Life is not easy for any of us. But it is a continual challenge and it is up to us to be cheerful—and to be strong, so that those who depend on us may draw strength from our example.

–Rose Kennedy

If you can’t be content with what you have received, be thankful for what you have escaped.

–Izaak Walton

Two men looked through prison bars—

One saw mud; the other, stars.

–Dale Carnegie


Words that come from the heart enter the heart.

–The Sages

If you would persuade, you must appeal to interest rather than intellect.

–Benjamin Franklin

Think as a wise man but communicate in the language of the people.

–William Butler Yeats

Your purpose is to make your audience see what you saw, hear what you heard, feel what you felt. Relevant detail, couched in concrete, colorful language, is the best way to recreate the incident as it happened and to picture it for the audience.

—Dale Carnegie

But I don’t practice to make perfect, and I don’t memorize. If I did either, I’d sound like a robot, or worse, like a person trying very hard to say things in an exact, specific, and entirely unnatural style, which people can spot a mile away. My intent is simply to know my material so well that I’m very comfortable with it. Confidence, not perfection, is the goal.

–Scott Berkun

A speech that is read is like a dried flower; the substance indeed, is there, but the color is faded and the perfume is gone.

–Paul Lorain


It’s not our job to toughen our children up to face a cruel and heartless world. It’s our job to raise children who will make the world a little less cruel and heartless.

—L. R. Knost

Deciding to have a child is to decide forever to have your heart walking around outside your body.

–Elizabeth Stone

If I wanted a special doll, and I begged my mother for it, she would give me a speech about how I had three dolls at home and I didn’t need another one, and remind me of how fortunate I was compared to all the poor little girls all over the world who didn’t have dolls. And when she finished telling me why I shouldn’t want what I wanted, I still wanted it just as badly—only I felt ashamed of myself for wanting it.

–Nancy Samalin

My hands were busy through the day,

I didn’t have much time to play

The little games you asked me to,

I didn’t have much time for you.

I’d wash your clothes, I’d sew and cook

But when you’d bring your picture book

And ask me please to share your fun,

I’d say, ‘A little later, Son.’

But life is short, the years rush past,

A little boy grows up so fast!

Now the picture books are put away,

There aren’t any games to play

No good night kiss, no prayers to hear;

That all belongs to yesteryear.

My hands once busy, now lie still,

The days are long and hard to fill,

I wish I might go back and do

The little things you asked me to!

–Alice Chase

A baby born today stands roughly a 50-50 chance of keeping his father. This is the first generation of American kids who must face not the sad loss of fathers to death, but the far more brutal knowledge that, to their fathers, many other things are more important than they are.

–Maggie Gallagher

Certain it is that there is no kind of affection so purely angelic as the love of a father to a daughter. He beholds her both with and without regard to her sex. In love to our wives, there is desire; to our sons, there is ambition; but in that to our daughters there is something which there are no words to express.

–Joseph Addison


The noblest monument to peace and to neighborly economic and social friendship in all the world is not a monument in bronze or stone, but the boundary which unites the United States and Canada—3,000 miles of friendship with no barbed wire, no gun or soldier and no passport on the whole frontier.

–Franklin D. Roosevelt

I see little hope for a peaceful world until men are excluded from the realm of foreign policy altogether and all decisions concerning international relations are reserved for women, preferably married ones.

–W. H. Auden

Peace is not a gap between times of fighting, or a space where nothing is happening. Peace is something that lives, grows, spreads— and needs to be looked after.

–Katherine Scholes

War can be abolished forever by providing clothing, food, and housing, instead of bombers, destroyers, and rockets.

–Trygve Lie

Yes, we love peace, but we are not willing to take wounds for it, as we are for war.

–John Andrew Holmes

It’s not our job to toughen our children up to face a cruel and heartless world. It’s our job to raise children who will make the world a little less cruel and heartless.

—L. R. Knost

Taking an active part in the solutions of the problems of peace is a moral duty which no conscientious man can shirk.

–Albert Einstein


Philosophy is the microscope of thought.

–Victor Hugo

Here is the beginning of philosophy: a recognition of the conflicts between men, a search for their cause, a condemnation of mere opinion…and the discovery of a standard of judgment.


All definite…knowledge belongs to science; all dogma as to what surpasses definite knowledge belongs to theology. But between theology and science there is a No Man’s Land, exposed to attack from both sides. This No Man’s Land is philosophy.

–Bertrand Russell

The pre-Socratics, including Thales, Parmenides, and Heraclitus, were the first philosophers. Although their views were sometimes naive, they raised some of the basic questions with which we still struggle.

—Manuel Velasquez and Vincent Barry

There is an enormous need for philosophies to be rethought in the light of the changing conditions of mankind.

–Alfred North Whitehead

Whence? Whither? Why? How?—These questions cover all philosophy.

—Joseph Joubert


Don’t permit the pressure to exceed the pleasure.

—Joe Maddon

I run like a girl. Try to keep up.

—T-Shirt Slogan

An amateur practices until he can do a thing right, a professional until he can’t do it wrong

–Percy C. Buck

When you are not practicing, remember, someone somewhere is practicing, and when you meet him he will win.

–Ed Macauley

When you are satisfied you’ve played your best game, you probably have.



Phosphorescence. Now, there’s a word to lift your hat to….To find that phosphorescence, that light within, that’s the genius behind poetry.

–Emily Dickinson

Breathe-in experience, breathe-out poetry.

–Muriel Rukeyser

Poetry is simply the most beautiful, impressive and widely effective mode of saying things, and hence its importance.

–Matthew Arnold

We don’t read and write poetry because it’s cute. We read and write poetry because we are members of the human race. And the human race is full of passion. Medicine, law, business, engineering: these are noble pursuits necessary to sustain life, but poetry, beauty, romance, love—These are what we stay alive for.

–Mr. Keating in Dead Poet’s Society

To fail to delight or touch or instruct one’s audience is to somehow fail in the very vocation of a poet.

–Michiko Kakutani

The crown of literature is poetry. It is its end and aim. It is the sublimest activity of the human mind. It is the achievement of beauty and delicacy. The writer of prose can only step aside when the poet passes.

–Somerset Maugham

The success of the poem is determined not by how much the poet felt in writing it: but by how much the reader feels in reading it.

—John Ciardi

Poetry…gives us a keener awareness of life.

–C. Day Lewis


The legitimate object of government, is to do for a community of people, whatever they need to have done, but cannot do, at all, or cannot, so well do, for themselves in their separate and individual capacities. In all that the people can individually do as well for themselves, government ought not to interfere.

—Abraham Lincoln

What the man in the street wants is not a big debate on fundamental issues; he wants a little medical care, a rug on the floor, a picture on the wall, a little music in the house, and a place to take Molly and the grandchildren when he retires.

–Lyndon Baines Johnson

I have only one yardstick by which I test every major problem – and that yardstick is: Is it good for America?

—Dwight D. Eisenhower

We need to stop looking to politicians to make our world better. Politicians don’t make the world a better place. Everything that’s ever made the world a better place has come from inventors, engineers, scientists, teachers, artists, builders, philosophers, healers, and people that choose love over hate.

—Don Freeman

No nation has friends—only interests.

–Charles De Gaulle


I would rather be ashes than dust! I would rather that my spark should burn out in a brilliant blaze than it should be stifled by dry rot. I would rather be a superb meteor, every atom of me in magnificent glow, than a sleepy and permanent planet. The proper function of man is to live, not to exist. I shall not spend my days trying to prolong them. I shall use my time.

–Jack London

Procrastination is the grave in which opportunity is buried.

—John Mason

Only put off until tomorrow what you are willing to die having left undone.

—Pablo Picasso

I avoid doing things, because if I do not do them, I can’t be said to fail at them.

–Sylvia Plath

Procrastination is a side effect of perfectionism. Afraid that we cannot do something perfectly, we hang back from trying at all. Often we call procrastination laziness, but it is not laziness. It is fear. As we learn to dismantle our perfectionism, we find ourselves free to move ahead. Our procrastination yields to baby steps in the direction of our dreams.

—Julia Cameron and Emma Lively

If you’re early, you’re on time. If you’re on time, you’re late.


Someday is not a day of the week.

—Denise Brennan-Nelson


Mental health problems do not affect three or four out of every five persons but one out of one.

–Dr. William Menninger

Human beings are not perfectible. They are improvable.

–Eric Sevareid

When you look directly at an insane man, all you see is a reflection of your own knowledge that he’s insane, which is not to see him at all. To see him you must see what he saw.

–Robert Pirsig

We can escape from the level of society, but not from the level of intelligence to which we were born.

–Randall Jarrell

All human activity is prompted by desire.

–Bertrand Russell

Psychology is the science of mental life.

—William James


Colors fade, temples crumble, empires fall but wise words endure.

—Edward Thorndike

I quote others only the better to express myself.

—de Montaigne

Quotations yield the greatest insight from the fewest words.

—Dan L. Miller

A quotation in a speech, article or book is like a rifle in the hands of an infantryman. It speaks with authority.

—Brendan Francis

It is a good thing for an uneducated man to read books of quotations.

—Winston Churchill

Familiar and noteworthy quotations reveal—as do ancient artifacts, temples, and dwellings, frescoes and cave paintings—the nature of the age and the people who created them.

—Morison Beck


Reading gives us some place to go when we have to stay where we are.

—Mason Cooley

The man who does not read good books has no advantage over the man who can’t read them.

–Mark Twain

Reading is to the mind, what exercise is to the body.

—Joseph Addison

Every man who knows how to read has it in his power to magnify himself, to multiply the ways in which he exists, to make his life full, significant and interesting.

–Aldous Huxley

I am a part of all that I have read.

–John Kieran

Half of today’s teenagers don’t read books—except when they’re made to.

–Niall Ferguson, 2011

No subject of study is more important than reading…all other intellectual powers depend on it.

–Jacques Barzun


Somewhere something incredible is waiting to be known.

–Carl Sagan

The deepest sin against the human mind is to believe things without evidence.

–Thomas Henry Huxley

To mistrust science and deny the validity of the scientific method is to resign your job as a human. You’d better go look for work as a plant or wild animal.

–P. J. O’Rourke

Hell, there are no rules here—we’re trying to accomplish something.

–Thomas Alva Edison

It is the lone worker who makes the first advance in a subject: the details may be worked out by a team, but the prime idea is due to the enterprise, thought and perception of an individual.

–Sir Alexander Fleming

In God we trust; all others bring data.

—W. Edwards Deming


Mummy herself has told us that she looked upon us more as her friends than her daughters. Now that is all very fine, but still, a friend can’t take a mother’s place. I need my mother as an example which I can follow. I want to be able to respect her.

—Anne Frank

If you have some respect for people as they are, you can be more effective in helping them to become better than they are.

–John W. Gardner

Respect yourself enough to walk away from anything that no longer serves you, grows you or makes you happy.

—Robert Tew

I can’t control your behavior; nor do I want that burden…but I will not apologize for refusing to be disrespected, to be lied to, or to be mistreated. I have standards; step up or step out.

—Seve Maraboli

If you have children, remember this: When you finish with them, the rest of the world has to live with them, so please teach them respect.


Tolerance implies a respect for another person, not because he is wrong or even because he is right, but because he is human.

–John Cogley


Daddy said: ‘All children must look after their own upbringing.’ Parents can only give good advice or put them on the right paths, but the final forming of a person’s character lies in their own hands.

–Anne Frank

Few things help an individual more than to place responsibility upon him, and to let him know that you trust him.

–Booker T. Washington

Every human being has a responsibility for injustice anywhere in the community.

–Scott Buchanan

I am not a product of my circumstances. I am a product of my decisions.

—Stephen R. Covey

The father who does not teach his son his duties is equally guilty with the son who neglects them.



Sometimes memories sneak out of my eyes and roll down my cheeks.

—Ged Backland

‘Old times’ never come back—and I suppose it’s just as well. What comes back is a new morning every day in the year, and that’s better.

—George E. Woodberry

The best place to be when you’re sad is Grandpa’s lap

As I grew older I thought the best part of my life was over. Then I was handed my first grandchild and realized…the best part of my life had just begun.

—T-Shirt Slogan

The years between 50 and 70 are the hardest. You are always being asked to do things and yet are not decrepit enough to turn them down.

—T. S. Eliot

My first grandchild, Jordan, was born on January 30, 2011. I was jolted, blindsided by a wallop of loving more intense than anything I could remember or had ever imagined….This is what I didn’t expect. I was at a time in my life where I’d assumed I had already had my best day, my tallest high. But now I was overwhelmed with euphoria. Why was she hitting with such a force? What explains this joy, this grandmother elation that is a new kind of love?

—Lesley Stahl


Safety applies with equal force to the individual, to the family, to the employer, to the state, the nation and to international affairs. Safety, in its widest sense, concerns the happiness, contentment and freedom of mankind.

—William M. Jeffers

1967—Jayne Mansfield is killed when her car runs under the rear end of a tractor trailer. Since then, all trailers have a DOT bar at the rear to keep cars from going under them.

1982—Seven people die when Tylenol packaging was tampered with. Since then, it takes a PhD, channel locks, and a sharp object to get into a bottle of pills.

1995—A bombing using a certain kind of fertilizer, solution grade ammonium nitrate, killed 168 people, so the government imposed severe restrictions on the purchase of that fertilizer.

2001—One person attempts to blow up a plane with a shoe bomb. Since then, all air travelers have to take off their shoes for scanning before being allowed to board.

Since 1968—1,516,863 people have died from guns on American soil. Gun violence kills an average of 168 people every two days! Now, the problem apparently can’t be solved except with thoughts and prayers.

—Internet Meme

Go to a parent meeting on some topic like ‘Teens and Drinking’ and you’re likely to get an earful about how to keep your teen drinker safe. Teach her to recognize signs of alcohol poisoning in her friends; tell her it’s always okay to call 911; advise her to check in on conked-out partygoers every 15 minutes or so to make sure they’re just sleeping it off and not unconscious. The message doesn’t involve any moral or emotional imperatives; it has to do only with not ending up dead or in jail.

—Caitlin Flanagan

Alternate tasks whenever possible, mixing non-computer-related tasks into the workday. This encourages body movement and the use of different muscle groups.

Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)

An incident is just the tip of the iceberg, a sign of a much larger problem below the surface.

—Don Brown

It should be noted that the teaching of safety is far more than the mere inculcation of specific habits and techniques. The problem of safety is one of the fundamental problems of the human race and has its root deep in the psychological and philosophical bases for right living, so that a course in safety if rightly conducted is of far-reaching significance from a cultural and character-forming point of view.

National Conference on Street and Highway Safety


If a school is a vibrant, innovative, child-centered place; if it has a reputation for excellence in teaching; if students are performing to the best of their ability; one can almost always point to the principal’s leadership as the key to success.

U.S. Senate Resolution 359, (1970)

High expectations are the key to everything.

–Sam Walton

The object now is to take the brilliance of the ideas of the people who work for you and focus them to affect the direction of the school, its growth, and strategic educational issues. Principals must realize people are ‘intellectual assets’ that make things happen; the costs of mismanaging them can be disastrous. Success will go to schools whose principals mobilize their people and unleash their competence, creativity, and commitment.

–Mike Brown

The most important person in the school is the principal.

–Hillary Clinton

Things do not get better by being left alone. Unless they are adjusted, they explode with a shattering detonation.

–Sir Winston Churchill

A school without a public relations program is like winking at a girl in the dark. You know what you’re doing, but no one else does.

–Steuart Henderson Britt

A positive school climate is perhaps the single most important expression of educational leadership.

—Scott Thompson

Nothing that is not a real crime makes a man appear so contemptible and little in the eyes of the world as inconsistency.

–Joseph Addison

It is the greatest good to the greatest number which is the measure of right and wrong.

–Jeremy Bentham

An institution is the lengthened shadow of one man.

–Ralph Waldo Emerson


Making the world a better place is, or ought to be, the most cherished function of any school in a democracy.

–Jim Haas

Let me explain why I like to pay taxes for schools even though I don’t personally have a kid in school: I don’t like living in a country with a bunch of stupid people.

—John Green

1st week of school: sandwich cut in a cute shape, sliced fruit, encouraging note. Last week of school: handful of croutons wrapped in foil.

—Simon Holland

We might cease thinking of school as a place, and learn to believe it is basically relationships between children and adults, and between children and other children. The four walls and the principal’s office would cease to loom so hugely as the essential ingredients.

–George Dennison

School: Four walls with tomorrow inside.

–Lon Watters

And the day inevitably comes when the scrapbook of summer, smeared with ice cream slurps and sweat stains, gives way to that new clean white notebook, spine unbroken, begging to be smudged with the enthusiasm of a number two pencil and a mind open to the possibilities.

—Toni Sorenson


Science is not a march toward truth. Rather, as the author John McPhee wrote in 1967, ‘science erases what was previously true.’ Every generation of scientists mulches under yesterday’s facts to fertilize those of tomorrow.

—Nathaniel Comfort

Albert Einstein came up with his theory of general relativity in 1915, revolutionizing the way we understand gravity and establishing the rules of space-time. A year later he predicted gravitational waves—ripples in the curvature of space-time that propagate as waves as they travel outward from a source like a black hole, transporting energy as gravitational radiation….‘The amazing thing about all this to me,’ says Northwestern astrophysicist Shane Larson, is that ‘Einstein had no reason to be thinking about this, but he did. There was no experiment to be done. There was no application to technology, no reason he had to work it all out other than his own pure curiosity about the way the universe was put together. And here we are 100 years later, finally able to do experiments where we can confirm that this crazy idea that Einstein had actually is the way the universe works. It’s awesome. It’s a testament to what our brains are capable of.’

—Stephanie Russell

Sometimes I think we’re alone in the universe, and sometimes I think we’re not. In either case the idea is quite staggering.

–Arthur C. Clarke

Millions saw the apple fall, but Newton was the one who asked why.

–Bernard Baruch

The universe is full of magical things patiently waiting for our wits to grow sharper.

–Eden Phillpotts

The simplest schoolboy is now familiar with truths for which Archimedes would have sacrificed his life.

–Ernest Renan

When you make the finding yourself – even if you’re the last person on Earth to see the light – you’ll never forget it.

–Carl Sagan

Somewhere, something incredible is waiting to be known.

–Carl Sagan

It’s not that I’m so smart. It’s that I stay with problems longer.

–Albert Einstein


To me the pageant of seasons is a thrilling and unending drama, the action of which streams through my fingertips.

–Helen Keller

If the seasons bleed into each other like a watercolor painting, it means not enough fish and berries to last the winter, not enough wood chopped for the stove, not enough meat in the freezer. One year winter came so fast and so hard, the leaves on the birch trees didn’t even have time to turn yellow and fall off; they froze solid green on the branches. They clung there for months on skinny skeleton arms, the color so blindingly wrong it was creepy. Every year it’s a race between the seasons, and that year fall lost.

—Bonnie-Sue Hitchcock

Spring is the sound of birds chirping, the taste of cherry juice, the feel of grass on bare feet, the sight of pink roses and blue skies, and the feel of dandelion fuzz. Spring, in other words, is a welcome, wondrous sensory overload.

Toni Sorenson

Summer was our best season: it was sleeping on the back screened porch in cots, or trying to sleep in the treehouse; summer was everything good to eat; it was a thousand colors in a parched landscape.

 Harper Lee

The month of August had turned into a griddle where the days just lay there and sizzled. 

Sue Monk Kidd

Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower.

—Albert Camus

One drifting yellow leaf on a windowsill can be a city dweller’s fall, pungent and melancholy as any hillside in New England.

–E. B. White

Our favourite amusement during that winter was tobogganing. In places the shore of the lake rises abruptly from the water’s edge. Down these steep slopes we used to coast. We would get on our toboggan, a boy would give us a shove, and off we went! Plunging through drifts, leaping hollows, swooping down upon the lake, we would shoot across its gleaming surface to the opposite bank. What joy! What exhilarating madness! For one wild, glad moment we snapped the chain that binds us to earth, and joining hands with the winds we felt ourselves divine!

Helen Keller


You were created, fashioned and designed in a special form to leave in the world something that did not exist before you were born!

—Israelmore Ayivor

People often say that this or that person has not yet found himself. But the self is not something one finds, it is something one creates.

–Thomas Szasz

Be yourself and love who you are and be proud, because you were born this way.

–Lady Gaga

Never rest until you have uncovered your essential self. Remember that. Somewhere, deep inside you, hidden by all sorts of fears and worries and petty little thoughts, is a clean pure being made of radiant colors.

—Shirley Jackson

Good work and good companions are the building blocks of self-esteem.


If you don’t run your own life, somebody else will.

–John Atkinson


Her little girl was late arriving home from school so the mother began to scold her daughter, but stopped and asked, ‘Why are you so late?’

‘I had to help another girl. She was in trouble,’ replied the daughter.

‘What did you do to help her?’

‘Oh, I sat down and helped her cry.’


In life it is not necessarily where you are going that counts; it’s what you leave behind.

–Dan L. Miller

I wondered why somebody didn’t do something, then I realized that I was somebody.


My life is my message.


For of those to whom much is given, much is required.

–John F. Kennedy

Everybody can be great because anybody can serve. 

–Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Every man is guilty of all the good he didn’t do.



Our society is so constituted that most people remain all their lives in the condition in which they were born, and have to depend on their imagination for their notions of what it is like to be in the opposite condition.

–George Bernard Shaw

Poverty is the openmouthed relentless hell which yawns beneath civilized society.

–Henry George

Always I have felt sorry for boys and girls who haven’t spent the first 16 years of their lives in a small American town. There one finds a nice balance of leisure and society which makes for richness in living.

–Edna Ferber

There is no greater impact made on our present society than the images seen, the sounds heard, and the drama brought daily by the media.

–Harry Belafonte

We have unmistakable proof that throughout all past time, there has been a ceaseless devouring of the weak by the strong.

–Herbert Spencer

The first man to fence in a piece of land, saying ‘This is mine,’ and who found people simple enough to believe him, was the real founder of civil society.

–Jean Jacques Rousseau


Students who are loved at home, come to school to learn, and students who aren’t, come to school to be loved.

—Nicholas A. Ferroni

I am a toddler. I am not built to sit still, keep my hands to myself, take turns, be patient, stand in line, or keep quiet. I need motion, I need novelty, I need adventure, and I need to engage the world with my whole body. Let me play. (Trust me, I’m learning.)


The secret of education is respecting the pupil.

–Ralph Waldo Emerson

If you go to an elite school where the other students in your class are all really brilliant, you run the risk of mistakenly believing yourself to not be a good student.

—Malcolm Gladwell

The best students come from homes where education is revered: where there are books, and children see their parents reading them.

—Leo Buscaglia

When teachers doubt your potential, show them how wrong they truly are.

—Ace Antonio Hall

Most of the time, all that separates a class president and a gang leader is numbers: a zip code, a paycheck, or a drug dealer’s phone number.

—Thomm Quackenbush


Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm.

—Winston Churchill

Whenever an individual or business decides that success has been attained, progress stops.

—Thomas J. Watson

It all depends on what you call success. But when you’re picking the school kid most likely to succeed, don’t overlook the one whose dog waits longest outside the school door.

–Burton Hillis

There is no such thing as a ‘self-made’ man. We are made up of thousands of others. Everyone who has ever done a kind deed for us, or spoken one word of encouragement to us, has entered into the make-up of our character and of our thoughts, as well as our success.

–George Matthew Adams

Success seems to be largely a matter of hanging on after others have let go.

–William Feather

I couldn’t wait for success—so I went ahead without it.

–Jonathan Winters

A man can succeed at almost anything for which he has unlimited enthusiasm.

–Charles Schwab


A kindergarten teacher asked a school social worker to observe a child in her class. At the tender age of 5, this boy had developed a regular pattern of absence, disturbing to his teacher. The teacher had been unable to reach the boy’s parents by telephone. The social worker observed the child in class and noticed nothing unusual about his play behavior. Finally, he called the boy aside to ask him why he was absent every Thursday. He told the child how much everyone liked him at school and how they enjoyed having him there. Why was it he did not come to school on Thursdays? Was there something about school activities on that day of the week that he disliked? Was there some problem at home that kept him there? ‘No problem’ replied the boy, his face lighting up. ‘But you see, my mother is an opera singer and she travels a lot. Thursday is the day she has arranged to stay at home to love me.’

—Chrissie Bamber

Until we are ready to tackle poverty in this country, we will never see a solution to student truancy.

—Adriane Kayoko Peralta

Truancy is a part of American folklore. From the days of Tom Sawyer, mature Americans have chuckled over the antics of adolescents attempting to avoid the drudgery of the classroom in favor of the delights of the old swimming hole. Even today, teachers and administrators chuckle over the lame excuses that students use to cover their absence from school. However, the time has long passed when school personnel can afford to take lightly the unexcused absence of any student. Times have changed since playing hooky was simply considered naughty. Today an education is a necessity, and the present degree to which students deprive themselves of the benefits of a formal education is astonishing.

—Dan L. Miller

There is a close correlation between getting up in the morning and getting up in the world.

–Ron Dentinger

Some researchers posit that if students who live in high-poverty neighborhoods attended school every day with no other changes being made, students would experience increased rates of academic achievement, high-school completion, post-secondary education attainment, and economic productivity.

Center for American Progress

Crime is a social problem, and education is the only real deterrent. Look at all of us in prison; we were all truants and dropouts, a failure of the educational system. Look at your truancy problem, and you’re looking at your future prisoners. Put the money there.

—Wilbert Rideau


My heart is singing for joy this morning. A miracle has happened! The light of understanding has shone upon my little pupil’s mind, and behold all things are changed.

–Anne Sullivan

My teacher is so near to me that I scarcely think of myself apart from her….All the best of me belongs to her—there is not a talent, or an aspiration or a joy in me that has not been awakened by her loving touch.

–Helen Keller

The single most important factor in determining student achievement is not the color of students’ skin or where they come from. It’s not who their parents are or how much money they have. It’s who their teacher is.

–Barack Obama

If kids come to us [educators/teachers] from strong, healthy functioning families, it makes our job easier. If they do not come to us from strong, healthy, functioning families, it makes our job more important

—Barbara Colorose

No child is going to learn unless they believe that their teacher loves them.

-John Morefield

I am indebted to my father for living, but to my teacher for living well.

–Alexander the Great

Teaching…The profession that creates all others.


A teacher affects eternity; no one can tell where his influence stops.

–Henry Adams

Teachers, who educate children, deserve more honor than parents, who merely gave them birth; for the latter provided mere life, while the former ensure a good life.


I will not let you fail.

–Marva Collins


If we teach students to memorize answers, they will do well on tests; if we teach students to solve problems, they will do well in life.

–Jack Price

Marks and grades—originally the measure of learning—have become a substitute for learning. Students work for grades—not knowledge.

–Jesse S. Nirenberg

Evaluation is about growth, not terminal judgement.

–Parker J. Palmer

Let us not judge our students simply on what they know. That is the philosophy of the quiz program. Rather, let them be judged on what they can generate from what they know—how well they leap the barrier from learning to thinking.

–Jerome Brunner

If we differentiate lessons, why do we give standardized tests?

—Dr. Justin Tarte

Every man is entitled to be valued by his best moment.

—Ralph Waldo Emerson


When you step from the wings onto the stage you go from total blackness to a blinding hot glare. After a moment you adjust, but there is that moment like being inside lightning.

—Meg Howrey

Oh, those wonder-filled evenings when acting enables me for a short moment to have more life.

–Liv Ullmann

Every now and then, when you’re on stage, you hear the best sound a player can hear. It’s a sound you can’t get in movies or in television. It is the sound of a wonderful, deep silence that means you’ve hit them where they live.

–Shelley Winters

Good actors are good because of the things they can tell us without talking. When they are talking, they are the servants of the dramatist. It is what they can show the audience when they are not talking that reveals the fine actor.

–Cedric Hardwicke

All theories of what a good play is, or how a good play should be written, are futile. A good play is a play which when acted upon the boards makes an audience interested and pleased. A play that fails in this is a bad play.

–Maurice Baring

Flint must be an extremely wealthy town; I see that each of you bought two or three seats.

–Victor Borge, playing to a half-filled house in Flint, Michigan


It’s not about thinking outside of the box. It’s about realizing there is no box.

—Jari Askins

Change your thoughts and you change your world.

–Norman Vincent Peale

A vacant mind invites dangerous inmates, as a deserted mansion tempts wandering outcasts to enter and take up their abode in its desolate apartments.

—Nicholas Hilliard

I not only use all the brains that I have, but all that I can borrow.

–Woodrow Wilson

Thought is action in rehearsal.

–Sigmund Freud


The sun, though it passes through dirty places, yet remains as pure as before.

–Francis Bacon

It is the greatest good to the greatest number which is the measure of right and wrong.

–Jeremy Bentham

The hottest places in hell are reserved for those who, in time of great moral crisis, maintain their neutrality.

–Dante Alighieri

Know your worth so you know when to say, ‘Yes’, and when to say, ‘Thank you but no thank you.’

—Sam Owen

Perhaps the worst sin in life is knowing right and not doing it.

–Martin Luther King. Jr.

To be good is noble, but to teach others how to be good is nobler—and less trouble.

–Mark Twain

To educate a person in mind and not in morals is to educate a menace to society.

–Theodore Roosevelt


Remember me.

(14-Year-Old Polish Girl About to be Hanged, Ravensbruck Concentration Camp.)

–Quoted in Howard Blum, Wanted!, 1976

At a makeshift morgue, …guards handed me paper tissues to block some of the smell. Many of the bodies…were mutilated…but one very little girl, I remember, still wore a tidy blue dress, white socks, shiny black shoes, and tiny gold bangles on her wrist. On a slab nearby, a young mother continued to clutch her baby as she had done at the moment they died. [From an Iranian airliner downed by missile fire]

–Christopher Dickey

There’s this mistaken notion that wars end, but they don’t end. What about the women that married the veterans and had to sit through silent dinner after silent dinner? Somewhere in this country there’s a 95-year-old woman who will wake up at night and say, ‘Where’s my baby?’ The answer is, her baby has been dead for 45 years. But the war’s not over for that Gold Star mother. It’ll never be over, and you can’t expect it to be over.

—Tim O’Brien

With guns you can kill terrorists. With education, you can kill terrorism.

—Malala Yousafzai

War is one of the constants of history, and has not diminished with civilization and democracy. In the last 3,421 years of recorded history, only 268 have seen no war.

–William and Ariel Durant

I see little hope for a peaceful world until men are excluded from the realm of foreign policy altogether and all decisions concerning international relations are reserved for women, preferably married ones.

–W. H. Auden


A wise man makes his own decisions; an ignorant man follows the public opinion.

—Grantland Rice

Knowledge is knowing how to construct a bridge from point A to point B. Wisdom is knowing if such a bridge should be built.

–Herbert Kahn

The simple realization that there are other points of view is the beginning of wisdom. Understanding what they are is a great step. The final test is understanding why they are held.

–Charles M. Campbell

These days people seek knowledge, not wisdom. Knowledge is of the past, wisdom is of the future.

—Vernon Cooper

Doubt is often the beginning of wisdom.

—M. Scott Peck

There is a wisdom of the head, and…a wisdom of the heart.

-Charles Dickens


Stop telling girls they can be anything they want when they grow up. I think it’s a mistake. Not because they can’t, but because it would have never occurred to them they couldn’t.

—Sarah Silverman

What do girls do who haven’t any mothers to help them through their troubles?

—Louisa May Alcott

Who would ever think that so much went on in the soul of a young girl?

—Anne Frank

I am in the delivery room with my niece moments after she brought her baby girl into the world. She is sobbing, ‘I feel so sorry for men,’ she says. ‘They can’t have babies.’ She was drowning in hormones, obviously, but never mind. Mothers know of what she spoke. So do fathers, though perhaps in a less immediately physical way. It is the joy that passeth all understanding. And, as with love, you can’t explain it to those who haven’t experienced it. That’s the unspoken truth.

–Kathleen Parker

Never grow a wishbone, daughter, where your backbone ought to be.

—Clementine Paddleford


During my second year of nursing school our professor gave us a quiz. I breezed through the questions until I read the last one: ‘What is the first name of the woman who cleans the school?’ Surely this was a joke. I had seen the cleaning woman several times, but how would I know her name? I handed in my paper, leaving the last question blank. Before the class ended, one student asked if the last question would count toward our grade. ‘Absolutely,’ the professor said. ‘In your careers, you will meet many people. All are significant. They deserve your attention and care, even if all you do is smile and say hello.’ I’ve never forgotten that lesson. I also learned her name was Dorothy.

—Joann C. Jones

If a man is called to be a streetsweeper, he should sweep streets even as Michelangelo painted, or Beethoven composed music, or Shakespeare wrote poetry. He should sweep streets so well that all the hosts of heaven and earth will pause to say, here lived a great streetsweeper who did his job well.

–Martin Luther King, Jr.

Stop telling girls they can be anything they want when they grow up. I think it’s a mistake. Not because they can’t, but because it would have never occurred to them they couldn’t.

—Sarah Silverman

For decades, women have misunderstood an important law of the professional jungle. It’s not enough to keep one’s head down and plug away, checking items off a list. Having talent isn’t merely about being competent; confidence is a part of that talent. You have to have it to excel.

–Katty Kay and Claire Shipman

Before you have an argument with your boss, take a good look at both sides—his side and the outside.

— John C. Maxwell


Yes, there is no doubt that paper is patient and as I don’t intend to show this cardboard-covered notebook bearing the proud name of ‘diary’ to anyone, unless I find a real friend, boy or girl, probably nobody cares. And now I come to the root of the matter, the reason for my starting a diary; it is that I have no such real friend.

–Anne Frank

The beautiful part of writing is that you don’t have to get it right the first time, unlike, say, a brain surgeon. You can always do it better, find the exact word, the apt phrase, the leaping simile.

–Robert Cormier

When I am asked what kind of writing is the most lucrative, I have to say, ransom notes.

–H. N. Swanson

You can always edit a bad page. You can’t edit a blank page.

—Jodi Picoult

Write freely and as rapidly as possible and throw the whole thing on paper. Never correct or rewrite until the whole thing is down. Rewrite in process is usually found to be an excuse for not going on.

–John Steinbeck

Don’t say the old lady screamed—bring her on and let her scream

—Mark Twain

Verbose writing creates comatose readers.

–Elyse Sommer

Every kind of writing is good save that which bores.


Simplicity is the glory of expression.

–Walt Whitman

The aim of writing is to enable people a little better to enjoy life or a little better to endure it.

–W. H. Auden

Dante never went to hell. Shakespeare never went to ancient Rome. Writers have the right to exercise their imaginations in any area they think appropriate. I think possibly a book gains by its writer not having been through the experience, rather than the other way around. Experience itself doesn’t authenticate good writing.

–William Styron


Learn to write well, or not to write at all.

–John Dryden and John Sheffield

Write while the heat is in you….The writer who postpones the recording of his thoughts uses an iron which has cooled.

–Henry David Thoreau

Formula: 2nd Draft = 1st Draft ‑10%.

—Stephen King

The most valuable of all talents is that of never using two words when one will do.

–Thomas Jefferson

Avoid using the word ‘very’ because it’s lazy. A man is not very tired, he is exhausted. Don’t use very sad, use morose.

—John Keating, Dead Poet’s Society

I never write in (a) pokey way….I have to turn loose like the blowing wind. I’ve got to get going. I’ve got to roll. I can’t halt. When I get started, I’m like a flowing stream or a wind that blows over the meadow. I’ve got to move….I never hang up on a word….If I can’t find the word I want at that time, I just keep going. I’ll hang up when I revise. But I want to get the story down on paper first. I want to get the mood of the poem down. I can think about words later.

–Jesse Stuart


Leonardo da Vinci was an ambidextrous workaholic. He sketched with his right hand while he wrote with his left—simultaneously!

Executive Speechwriter Newsletter

Handwriting allows you to set aside typed page count and concentrate on what’s important: words and story. Stephen King has reported writing Dreamcatcher with ‘the world’s finest word processor, a Waterman cartridge fountain pen.’ By slowing down, writers may write more scenes that matter with less conscious effort at style. And once you start writing longhand, you’ll be surprised how many words you can scribble.

—Michael Cahlin

I never quite know when I’m not writing. Sometimes my wife comes up to me at a party and says, ‘Dammit, Thurber, stop writing.’ She usually catches me in the middle of a paragraph.

–James Thurber

Got a queer and most overpowering urge today to write, or typewrite, my whole novel on the pink, stiff, lovely-textured Smith memorandum pads of 100 sheets each: a fetish: somehow, seeing a hunk of that pink paper, different from all the endless reams of white bond, my task seems finite, special, rose-cast.

–Sylvia Plath

A poet told me that when her little boys were small she used to put her typewriter in the playpen and sit there and work while they tore up the house around her. Of course, she is an exceptionally energetic and resourceful person.

–Ellen Gilchrist

Thinking is the activity I love best, and writing to me is simply thinking through my fingers. I can write up to 18 hours a day. Typing 90 words a minute, I’ve done better than 50 pages a day. Nothing interferes with my concentration. You could put on an orgy in my office and I wouldn’t look up—well, maybe once.

–Isaac Asimov

Pencils must be round. A hexagonal pencil cuts my fingers after a long day.

–John Steinbeck

All I needed was a steady table and a typewriter…a marble-topped bedroom washstand table made a good place; the dining-room table between meals was also suitable.

–Agatha Christie

Some authors type their works, but I cannot do that. Writing is tied up with the hand, almost with a special nerve.

–Graham Greene

My bed is my best friend….I type in it, telephone in it, think in it, and stare at the wall from it. Some morning, a long time from now, I hope I will be found peacefully dead in it, lying in a narrow but cozy space between old manuscripts, lost books, empty teacups, misplaced nightgowns, and unsharpened pencils.

–Jane O’Reilly

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Sample Books by Dan L. Miller


Dan L. Miller Book The Call of the Wild, The Sea Wolf, To Build a Fire

Jack London Novels


Dan L. Miller Book Snowballs and Sinners

Young Adult Novel by Dan L. Miller


Dan L. Miller book Poems and Quotes for Those Averse to Poetry

Poetry and Quotes








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