30 Things Teachers Wish Everyone Knew

We lose sleep at night worrying about our students.

Things Teachers Wish Everyone Knew

Teachers are some of the hardest-working, passionate professionals you can find. They give so much, both mentally and physically, to their students and communities.

This Washington Post article on eight things teachers want people to know about them is a favorite among educators, and our WeAreTeachers Facebook community has chimed in with their own answers. Take a look at some of the things teachers wish everyone knew.

Things Teachers Wish Everyone Knew About the Profession

1. When I am forced to teach to the test to avoid getting fired, I feel like I’m betraying myself and my kids. —China R.

2. I wish the state would realize how insulting it is to open up schools founded by people with fancy degrees and an “express” education degree. Rather than putting money into those entities, why not invest in the teachers, students, and families that have been there for years? —Becca M.

3. How much of my own salary I spend on resources/equipment. —Cathy B.


4. How hard I work to create a safe, nonthreatening environment so that my students can openly discuss anything. —Marsha S.

5. How hard it is to deal with anxiety and depression while teaching. And that this job is so much harder than most people think. —MZ


Things Teachers Wish Students Knew 

6. That I get it. School isn’t only about what you learn from the books, but the amount of effort you put in. I try to see my students for who and what they are, and who and what they can be. —Susan K.

7. That I was a high school dropout. If anyone had ever told me I would wind up a teacher, I would have never believed them. Because of my experiences, I want my students to know that no matter what they are going through, they are not alone and we will get through it! —Tiana H.

8. I wish people knew that I was a terrible student in high school despite my grades and that being a teacher made me a much better student. —Nils H.

9. That I’m trying my best. —Cali S.

10. How hard I’m trying to help them all feel safe. —Sarah H.

11. I teach science. I wish they knew that as much as I try to make it fun and interesting, sometimes there’s just STUFF THEY NEED TO KNOW. —Wendy P.

12. How much I need some time away from teaching over the summer break and how much I think about each one of them, every day, during that time. —Michelle D.

13. I wish my students knew how hurtful words really affect others and myself. Those rude comments you make, those disrespectful words you say to me really do hurt. —BT

14. I wish they knew that me being tough on them means I care. —PG

15. I think all of these state tests are ridiculous and that I know they are capable of learning and have learned and grown FAR more than any test score shows. —KW

Things Teachers Wish Parents Knew

16. How much I want your kids to do well and how hard I work to do MY best to make that happen, but how there are SO many other factors that impact a child’s success than just one teacher. —Susan H.

17. That I lose sleep at night worrying about my students. How can I be a better teacher, role model, and leader? —Sarah H.

18. That I am a professional, trained in my position. —Mindy A.

19. Grades are earned and not given. —JJ

20. How much time and effort I put into my lessons because I really do care about the students. —HB

21. I’m strict on students because I love them, and strict does not equal mean. —KL

Things Teachers Wish Others Knew About How Hard They Work 

22. How much time, energy, blood, sweat, and tears I have sacrificed for my students over 20 years of teaching—and how I don’t regret it at all. —Angelique K.

23. How hard we actually work … year-round. —Amy B.

24. That those bags under my eyes are from staying up until 1 a.m. to prep, and it’s not just because I’m “old.” —EF

25. I sometimes put more effort into planning and teaching my students than I do my health, my marriage, or my daughter. —JE

Things Teachers Wish Everyone Knew About the Joys of Teaching 

26. I wish people knew that the real joy I get from teaching is running into former students and hearing how well their lives have turned out. —Nils H.

27. You can’t forget the one student who comes up at the end of the day and says, “Thank you for all the cool stuff you taught me today!” —Lisa G. 

28. We teach for the moments when an adult says, “You’re the teacher who saved my child’s life! Thank you for being there when no one else was! Thank you for looking at my child as more than a job!” —Angel R.  

29. We teach for the good days … those days where you have the breakthrough with a student that is typically a struggle. The moments when you see the “aha!” And the days you see the light turn on after days, weeks, or months of struggling. —Patricia C.  

30. We teach for the kids that need someone to believe in them. —Terri M. 

What do you wish more people knew about teaching? Come share in our WeAreTeachers HELPLINE group on Facebook. 

Plus, how to help teachers who are exhausted and stressed.

30 Things Teachers Wish Everyone Knew