10 Teachers Who Changed The World

There isn’t a person among us who hasn’t had their lives touched by a particular teacher. Teachers inspire us and help us realize our full potential. They help us to reach our goals, whether these goals are personal, professional or academic. Throughout history, teachers have improved our quality of lives through education and have done so without the need for praise or personal recognition. It is their dedication and hard work that improved the lives of their students and enriched the community in which they lived and worked.

Of course, some teachers have a greater impact on society than others. There are teachers who have stamped their mark on civilization as a whole and has dramatically changed the course of history. Today, we are going to be discussing 10 teachers who changed not only their local communities and the lives of their students, but the
whole world as well.

1. Confucius

Confucius was a Chinese thinker who lived during the fifth century BCE and developed Confucianism. Confucianism is a complex system of moral, philosophical, social and political thought that had a dramatic influence on Asian culture. This philosophical system requires that individuals focus on moral development and personal cultivation. It’s influence can be seen in many Eastern Asian countries who continue to make laws based upon the system’s main concepts of moral cultivation.

2. Socrates

Socrates is Greek philosopher who is acknowledged by scientists and educators all over the world as being one of the most enlightened teachers in history. He is also credited as being the father of Western philosophy and developed the theory of negative hypothesis elimination known as the Socratic Method. This theory helped to
cultivate critical thinking in the West and its influence can be felt in the fields of law, psychotherapy and even human resource training.

3. Albert Einstein

Albert Einstein was a theoretical physicist, teacher and author who is best known for his contributions to the field of general relativity and special relativity. He is also known for his theories on post-Newtonian expansion, unified field theory, principle of equivalence and theory of critical opalescence. These theories expanded physics in ways that are still being felt to this very day.

4. Friedrich Fröbel

Friedrich Fröbel was a German teacher who laid the foundation for the modern educational system. He was the first to theorize that education should shape itself to the particular needs and capabilities of children. He also developed the idea of kindergarten and coined the phrase in both German and English.

5. Noah Webster

Noah Webster was an American teacher who was an editor, lexicographer, author and spelling reformer. He is often referred to as the ‘Father of American Education” and his speller books were responsible for teaching four generations of American children how to read and spell. He is also known for his efforts to take religion out of
the classroom and make it more secular.

6. Andrea del Verrocchio

Andrea del Verrocchio was a fifteenth century sculptor and painter who taught at the court of Lorenzo de’ Medici in Florence. Though he was a great painter in his own
right, he is best known for teaching some of the greatest painters of all time including Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Lorenzo di Credi and Pietro Perugino.

7. Erin Gruwell

Erin Gruwell is a teacher that began her career at Woodrow High School in Long Beach, California. Though her students came from tough inner-city neighborhoods and were often considered incorrigible, she was able to inspire them to embrace education and many of them would go on to become successful students in college. She also founded the Freedom Writers Foundation, an organization whose primary purpose is to inspire underprivileged students.

8. LouAnne Johnson

LouAnne Johnson, best known for her character played by Michelle Pfeiffer in the movie Dangerous Minds, is a teacher who worked to encourage the academic efforts of underprivileged children. She has written several books and continues to work with underprivileged students all over the country.

9. Harriet Beecher Stowe

Many people recognize Harriet Beecher Stowe as an American abolitionist and author who wrote “Uncle Tom’s Cabin”, a book that is commonly believed to be directly responsible for starting the Civil War. However, before she wrote this landmark book she was a teacher who founded a school in Ohio and taught her students the virtues of tolerance and equality.

10. Anne Sullivan Macy

Anne Sullivan Macy, known popularly as simply Annie Sullivan, was the teacher and lifelong companion of Helen Keller. She is well respected for her teaching methods that allowed Keller to progress to her full potential. She was also recognized by Temple University for her tireless commitment to Helen Keller’s education. Annie Sullivan would go on to become on of the central characters in Keller’s book “The Story of Me”, which was made into the popular play and movie entitled “The Miracle Worker.”

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