Schools can be a great avenue to help students acquire academic knowledge. But they can also serve as a learning ground where students can develop holistically, exploring essential life skills like resilience, determination, and consistency.
As a teacher, it’s your duty to guide and encourage your students to reach their full potential while preparing them for the real world. Admittedly, it can sometimes be challenging to connect with each of your students, which is why motivational quotes help find a way to unite our different experiences.
From timeless favorites to classic inspirational words from notable figures, including educators, authors, and leaders who strived to make their mark in history, evoking emotion and meaningful experiences. Likewise, there are perfect quotes that encourage students when they need to be pushed to work harder, stay focused on their goals, or simply smile when faced with challenges.
We have compiled 100+ captivating quotes for motivating students that can spark inspiration as your students follow their paths toward success in the classroom or the real world.
Motivational Quotes About Education
Education does not end with exams and graduation. It plays an essential role in cultivating value for personal growth and success.
Here are some of our favorite short inspirational quotes about education:
- “The function of education is to teach one to think intensively and to think critically. Intelligence plus character — that is the goal of true education.” – Martin Luther King Jr.
- “Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish, and you feed him for a lifetime” – Maimonides.
- “Education is the kindling of a flame, not the filling of a vessel.” – Socrates.
- “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” – Nelson Mandela.
- “An investment in knowledge pays the best interest.” – Benjamin Franklin.
- “Children have to be educated, but they have also to be left to educate themselves.” – Ernest Dimnet.
- “Education is the key to unlocking the world, a passport to freedom.” – Oprah Winfrey.
- “Education’s purpose is to replace an empty mind with an open one.” – Malcolm Forbes.
- “Education is what remains after one has forgotten what one has learned in school.” – Albert Einstein.
- “Take the attitude of a student, never be too big to ask questions, never know too much to learn something new.” – Augustine Og Mandino.
- “Education without values, as useful as it is, seems rather to make man a more clever devil.” – C.S. Lewis.
Motivational Quotes About Success
Success is a vital aspect of life. Therefore, it’s essential to cultivate a healthy definition of success in your students, along with how they can achieve it. Some begin by reading productivity books to improve efficiency, while others apply different sayings to reframe and reshape how they define a successful person.
Here are some of our favorite success quotes for motivating students:
- “Success is a lousy teacher. It seduces smart people into thinking they can’t lose.” – Bill Gates.
- “Ambition is the path to success. Persistence is the vehicle you arrive in.” – Bill Bradley.
- “Self-belief and hard work will always earn you success.” – Virat Kohli.
- “Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.” – Winston Churchill.
- “However difficult life may seem, there is always something you can do and succeed at.” – Stephen Hawking.
- “Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” – Winston Churchill.
- “Some people dream of success, while other people get up every morning and make it happen.” – Wayne Huizenga.
- “Put your heart, mind, and soul into even your smallest acts. This is the secret of success.” – Swami Sivananda.
- “Things work out best for those who make the best of how things work out.” – John Wooden.
- “Success? I don’t know what that word means. I’m happy. But success, that goes back to what, in somebody’s eyes, success means. For me, success is inner peace. That’s a good day for me.” – Denzel Washington.
- “The best revenge is massive success.” Frank Sinatra.
Motivational Quotes About Failure and Setbacks
While success may bring glory to your students, it is also a humbling experience to accept failures in their studies or at any point in their lives.
The best motivational quotes give an alternative perspective on failure while navigating the negative feelings that follow. Your students need to accept that failures and setbacks are a part of life, and how they overcome these failures will show their growth and maturity.
Here are some of our favorite self-inspirational quotes about failures and setbacks:
- “Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.” – Albert Einstein.
- “There is only one thing that makes a dream impossible to achieve: the fear of failure.” – Paulo Coelho.
- “It is fine to celebrate success, but it is more important to heed the lessons of failure.” – Bill Gates.
- “My great concern is not whether you have failed, but whether you are content with failure.” – Abraham Lincoln.
- “Failure is delay, not defeat. It is a temporary detour, not a dead end.” – Denis Waitley.
- “Remember that failure is not the opposite of success. It’s part of success.” – Unknown.
- “There is no failure except in no longer trying.” – Elbert Hubbard.
- “Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm.” – Winston Churchill.
- “It is impossible to live without failing at something unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all, in which case you have failed by default.” – J.K. Rowling.
Motivational Quotes About Accepting Failures
One of the first ways to navigate failures is to accept them. Being able to accept failures is a trait that you can cultivate in your students’ lives.
Here are some motivational quotes about accepting failures and how students can see them as opportunities to grow and learn:
- “Failure teaches you how not to fail again.” – Unknown.
- “The cost of failure is…learning.” – Neil Strauss.
- “Try again. Fail again. Fail better.” – Samuel Beckett.
- “You have to be able to accept failure to get better.” – LeBron James.
- “There is no innovation and creativity without failure. Period.” – Brene Brown.
- “Learning starts with failure; the first failure is the beginning of education.” – John Hersey.
- “Failure is a part of the process. You just learn to pick yourself back up.” – Michelle Obama.
- “The difference between average people and achieving people is their perception of and response to failure.” – John C. Maxwell.
- “Failure is an inescapable part of life and a critically important part of any successful life.” – Tal Ben-Shahar.
- “The successful man will profit from his mistakes and try again in a different way.” – Dale Carnegie.
Motivational Quotes About Resilience
Those who do not learn how to pick themselves up until later in life will find it challenging to navigate the trials and tribulations of life. This is why it’s essential to teach your students about resilience so they can pick themselves up now and survive their academic years.
If some of your students find it difficult to bounce back from challenges, here are some quotes of motivation in life to help instill resilience in their minds:
- “The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.” – Nelson Mandela.
- “Sometimes, you have to give up. Sometimes, knowing when to give up, when to try something else is genius. Giving up doesn’t mean stopping. Don’t ever stop.” – Phil Knight.
- “I tried and failed. I tried again and again and succeeded”. – Gail Borden.
- “It’s your reaction to adversity, not adversity itself, that determines how your life’s story will develop.” – Dieter F. Uchtdorf.
- “Resilience is very different than being numb. Resilience means you experience, you feel, you fail, you hurt. You fall. But, you keep going.” – Yasmin Mogahed.
- “No matter how you define success, you will need to be resilient, empowered, authentic, and limber to get there.” – Joanie Connell.
- “If your heart is broken, make art with the pieces.” – Shane Koyczan.
- “Resilience is knowing that you are the only one that has the power and the responsibility to pick yourself up.” – Mary Holloway.
- “Resilience is not about being able to bounce back like nothing has happened. Resilience is your consistent resistance to give up.” – Janna Cachola.
- “Free play teaches children to be less anxious. It teaches them resilience.” – Jessica Joelle Alexander.
Motivational Quotes About Overcoming Obstacles
Life is full of challenges. As a teacher, nurturing your students and preparing them to face these obstacles will help them become stronger while allowing them to focus on learning to succeed, even when faced with adversity.
Here are some of our favorite self-inspirational quotes about overcoming obstacles:
- “Being challenged in life is inevitable. Being defeated is optional.” – Roger Crawford.
- “Achieving success is a challenge, but so is struggling, so you may as well choose success.” – Rob Liano.
- “Worry never accomplishes anything. When you have a problem, it is best to concentrate on the solution to that problem, not the problem itself.” – Thomas D. Willhite.
- “Strength and growth come only through continuous effort and struggle.” – Napoleon Hill.
- “There will be obstacles. There will be doubters. There will be mistakes. But with hard work, there are no limits.” – Michael Phelps.
- “When you meet obstacles with gratitude, your perception starts to shift, resistance loses its power, and grace finds a home within you.” – Oprah Winfrey.
- “Many times, we are our worst enemy. If we could learn to conquer ourselves, then we will have a much easier time overcoming the obstacles that are in front of us.” – Stephan Labossiere.
- “Inspiring others can come in many forms; it can simply be by sharing your story, your struggles, and how you managed to overcome your obstacles.” – Hagir Elsheikh.
- “There are no negatives in life, only challenges to overcome that will make you stronger.” – Eric Bates.
- “Obstacles are those frightful things you see when you take your eyes off your goal.” – Henry Ford.
Motivational Quotes About Positivity
A lot of good things come with keeping a positive mindset in life. When positivity overpowers negativity, your students will likely build emotional maturity to handle life’s ups and downs.
Here are some short inspirational quotes about positivity and promoting a positive attitude:
- “Positive anything is better than negative nothing.” – Elbert Hubbard.
- “The only way to do great work is to love what you do.” – Steve Jobs.
- “In order to carry a positive action, we must develop here a positive vision.” – Dalai Lama.
- “Be positive. Your mind is more powerful than you think. What is down in the well comes up in the bucket. Fill yourself with positive things.” – Tony Dungy.
- “Discipline your mind to think positively. Discipline your mind to see the good in every situation and look on the best side of every intent.” – Brainhack Quotes.
- “A negative mind will never give you a positive life.” – Unknown.
- “The more positive thoughts you have, the better you feel, which causes you to have more positive thoughts, then you feel even better.” – Unknown.
- “You are the only one who can control the way you think. Make sure you nourish the positive thoughts and weed out the negative ones!” – Catherine Pulsifer.
- “One of the most efficient ways you can improve your life is by simply thinking in a more positive way.” – Robert Norman.
- “If you are positive, you’ll see opportunities instead of obstacles.” – Widad Akrawi.
- “Believe that life is worth living, and your belief will help create the fact.” – William James.
- “The less you respond to negative people, the more positive your life will become.” – Paolo Coelho.
- “If opportunity doesn’t knock, build a door.” – Milton Berle.
- “The happiness of your life depends upon the quality of your thoughts.” – Marcus Aurelius.
- “The way I see it, if you want the rainbow, you gotta put up with the rain.” – Dolly Parton.
- “Winning doesn’t always mean being first. Winning means you’re doing better than you’ve done before.” – Bonnie Blair.
- “It always seems impossible until it is done.” – Nelson Mandela.
- “The difference between ordinary and extraordinary is that little extra.” – Jimmy Johnson.
Motivational Quotes About Hard Work and Determination
School is about learning to put in the hard work, staying focused, and practicing determination to achieve goals. These motivational quotes can help remind students about two essential ingredients of success — hard work and perseverance:
- “We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” – Aristotle.
- “Hard work beats talent when talent doesn’t work hard.” – Tim Notke.
- “Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.” – Maya Angelou.
- “Success is no accident. It is hard work, perseverance, learning, studying, sacrifice and most of all, love of what you are doing or learning to do.” – Pelé.
- “I do not know anyone who has got to the top without hard work. That is the recipe. It will not always get you to the top, but should get you pretty near.” – Margaret Thatcher.
- “If you really look closely, most overnight successes took a long time.” – Steve Jobs.
- “Talent is cheaper than table salt. What separates the talented individual from the successful one is a lot of hard work.” – Stephen King.
- “I’m a great believer in luck, and I find the harder I work, the more I have of it.” – Thomas Jefferson.
- “Hard work spotlights the character of people: some turn up their sleeves, some turn up their noses, and some don’t turn up at all.” – Sam Ewing.
- “Successful people are not gifted; they just work hard, then succeed on purpose.” – G.K. Neilson.
- “Visualization works if you work hard. That’s the thing. You can’t just visualize and go eat a sandwich.” – Jim Carrey.
Motivational Quotes About Learning
Everyone’s lifelong journeys involve a constant state of learning and growing. Quotes for motivating students to embrace learning can help them develop stronger relationships with processing and learning new things. This way, it eventually becomes a hobby rather than a difficult task.
- “The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.”- Dr. Seuss.
- “Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning stays young.” – Henry Ford.
- “The beautiful thing about learning is that nobody can take it away from you.” – B.B. King.
- “Learning is a treasure that will follow its owner everywhere.” – Chinese Proverb.
- “An investment in knowledge pays the best interest.” – Benjamin Franklin.
- “There is no end to education. It is not that you read a book, pass an examination, and finish with education. The whole of life, from the moment you are born to the moment you die, is a process of learning.” – Jiddu Krishnamurti.
- “We now accept the fact that learning is a lifelong process of keeping abreast of change. And the most pressing task is to teach people how to learn.” – Peter Drucker.
- “Develop a passion for learning. If you do, you will never cease to grow.” – Anthony J. D’Angelo.
- “It is what we know already that often prevents us from learning.” – Claude Bernard.
- “The most useful piece of learning for the uses of life is to unlearn what is untrue.” – Antisthenes.
Motivational Quotes About Dreams and Aspirations
You will encounter many kinds of students every academic year during your career as a teacher. Everyone has a different personality, upbringing, dreams, and aspirations. Having quotes to motivate students to pursue their dreams is an excellent way to keep them concentrated on being more fruitful in their studies.
Here are some of our top-picked motivational quotes about dreams and aspirations:
- “Shoot for the moon, and if you miss, you’ll still be among the stars.” – Les Brown.
- “The only thing that will stop you from fulfilling your dreams is you.” – Tom Bradley.
- “When you cease to dream, you cease to live.” – Malcolm Forbes.
- “If you can dream it, you can do it.” – Walt Disney.
- “A dream doesn’t become reality through magic; it takes sweat, determination, and hard work.” – Colin Powell.
- “Living the dream is simply a form of living out your passion, of making that passion gradually, through persistence and effort, a central part of your life.” – Urijah Faber.
- “Never limit yourself because of others’ limited imagination; never limit others because of your own limited imagination.” – Mae Jemison.
- “You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.” – C.S. Lewis.
- “To accomplish great things, we must not only act but also dream; not only plan but also believe.” – Anatole France.
- “If you take responsibility for yourself, you will develop a hunger to accomplish your dreams.” – Les Brown.
Motivational Quotes About Gratitude and Appreciation
Gratitude is a helpful habit that your students will benefit from, especially when learned early. Instilling this discipline with motivational quotes can encourage them to appreciate who they are and what they currently have as they work towards their goals.
Here are some of our quotes about showing gratitude and appreciation:
- “Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow.” – Melody Beattie.
- “Acknowledging the good that you already have in your life is the foundation for all abundance.” – Eckhart Tolle.
- “Learn to be thankful for what you already have while you pursue all that you want.” – Jim Rohn.
- “Gratitude is the ability to experience life as a gift. It liberates us from the prison of self-preoccupation.” – John Ortberg.
- “Gratitude can transform common days into thanksgivings, turn routine jobs into joy, and change ordinary opportunities into blessings.” – William Arthur Ward.
- “By practicing gratitude, we can actually wire our brains to help us build resilience.” – Christina Costa.
- “Gratitude doesn’t change the scenery. It merely washes clean the glass you look through so you can see the colors.” – Richelle E. Goodrich.
- “There are so many things in the world that could be invisible to the material eye, and when you take a moment to stop, to pause, to be present and notice them—that’s gratitude.” – Jay Shetty.
- “Gratitude is the healthiest of all human emotions. The more you express gratitude for what you have, the more likely you will have even more to express gratitude for.” – Zig Ziglar.
Motivational Quotes About Leadership and Self-Empowerment
They say students are our future leaders. And as a teacher, it falls on you to bring out their potential leadership skills. And what better way to discover leadership skills and improve self-empowerment than through the words of inspirational leaders and pioneers themselves?
Here are some short inspirational quotes you can use to encourage your students to take charge of their lives and find the spark to become leaders:
- “To handle yourself, use your head; to handle others, use your heart.” – Eleanor Roosevelt.
- “If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more, and become more, you are a leader.” – John Quincy Adams.
- “Leaders are the ones who have the courage to go first, to put themselves at personal risk to open a path for others to follow.” – Simon Sinek.
- “Titles don’t make you a leader. Impact does.” – 99 Thoughts For Student Leaders.
- “Leadership and learning are indispensable to each other.” – John F. Kennedy.
- “Leaders are made. They are not born. They are made by hard effort, which is the price which all of us must pay to achieve any goal that is worthwhile.” – Vince Lombardi.
- “No man will make a great leader who wants to do it all himself or get all the credit for doing it.” – Andrew Carnegie.
- “Leadership is action, not position.” – Donald H. McGannon.
- “He who cannot be a good follower cannot be a good leader.” – Aristotle.
- “Leaders think and talk about the solutions. Followers think and talk about the problems.” – Brian Tracy.
Motivational Quotes About Routines
Every part of our lives is built around different routines that help us function each day. Therefore, students can benefit significantly from establishing healthy routines and good habits.
So here are the best motivational quotes that encourage healthy habits and daily routines:
- “Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going.” – Jim Ryun.
- “Excellence is not a singular act, but a habit. You are what you repeatedly do.” – Shaquille ONeal.
- “Winners make a habit of doing things losers don’t want to do.” – Lucas Remmerswaal.
- “Character is simply habit long continued.” – Plutarch.
- “Successful people are simply those with successful habits.” – Brian Tracy.
- “You’ll never change your life until you change something you do daily. The secret of your success is found in your daily routine.” – John C. Maxwell.
- “Consciously create habits because habits unconsciously dictate your life.” – Anonymous.
- “Success is the sum of small efforts repeated day in, day out.” – Robert Collier.
- “Daily deeds determine destiny.” – Barney Matthews.
Motivational Quotes About Making the Best Out of Limited Time
From time to time, students may feel overwhelmed with their academic responsibilities, leaving them with limited time to do anything else. While there will be busy days, it’s essential to remind them that they have the power to make the best of their limited time.
One of the ways they can accommodate their schedules is by using the resources at their fingertips, like taking advantage of tools, such as Google Sheets, to increase their productivity.
Meanwhile, here are some quotes of motivation in life that will remind your students to maximize their time:
- “Time and tide wait for no man.” – Geoffrey Chaucer.
- “It is not enough to be busy, so are ants – The question is, what are we busy about?” – Henry David Thoreau.
- “Better three hours too soon than one minute too late.” – William Shakespeare.
- “Don’t watch the clock; do what it does. Keep going.” – Sam Levenson.
- “Only put off until tomorrow what you are willing to die having left undone.” – Pablo Picasso.
- “Procrastination is the thief of time.” – Edward Young.
- “You may delay, but time will not.” – Benjamin Franklin.
- “I don’t wait for moods. You accomplish nothing if you do that. Your mind must know it has got to get down to work.” – Pearl S. Buck.
- “Begin while others are procrastinating. Work while others are wishing.” – William Arthur Ward.
- “Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life.” – Steve Jobs.
Deep Motivational Quotes
Some motivational quotes are meant to provoke deeper thinking so your students will assess themselves, contemplate their goals, and take the time to examine their life’s purpose.
Here are some deeper inspirational words your students can read about:
- “The purpose of our lives is to be happy.” – Dalai Lama.
- “Don’t wait. The time will never be just right.” – Napoleon Hill.
- “To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people exist, that is all.” – Oscar Wilde.
- “To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson.
- “If you tell the truth, you don’t have to remember anything.” – Mark Twain.
- “We are what our thoughts have made us, so take care about what you think. Words are secondary. Thoughts live; they travel far.” – Swami Vivekananda.
- “Always remember that you are absolutely unique. Just like everyone else.” – Margaret Mead.
- “If you continue to think the way you’ve always thought, you’ll continue to get what you’ve always got.” – Kevin Trudeau.
- “Life is not about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself.” – Lolly Daskal.
Quotes for Motivating Students About the Future
Students enter schools with hopes and dreams of building a better future. Different words can evoke powerful feelings to motivate students to be hopeful about their futures and look forward to their future accomplishments.
Here’s our list of quotes that encourage students to think about their futures:
- “The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.” – Eleanor Roosevelt.
- “The best way to predict the future is to invent it.” – Theodore Hook.
- “The choices we make today create the future that we are dreaming of.” – Kapil Tetarwal.
- “Those who stare at the past have their backs turned to the future.” – Anonymous.
- “Study the past if you would define the future.” – Confucius.
- “Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards.” – Søren Kierkegaard.
- “Life is a preparation for the future, and the best preparation for the future is to live as if there were none.” – Albert Einstein.
- “Your past does not equal your future.” – Tony Robbins.
- “Stop being a prisoner of your past. Become the architect of your future.” – Robin Sharma.
- “Forget the mistakes of the past and press on to the greater achievements of the future.” – Norman Vincent Peale.
Empower Students with Daily Inspiration
Exams, all-nighters, endless readings, and packed schedules might be how your students’ school years look like. And when everything catches up to them, they might need a helping hand to guide them back to their path.
Different quotes for motivating students can be one of the ways you can help them cope with life’s obstacles and improve their overall mindset. Empower your students with daily inspiration, so they have the knowledge and capacity to enhance their views and thoughts about their studies, pushing them to work harder towards their futures.
Want to learn how to attract success in your life? Consider this highly rated Udemy course: How to Be Successful: Create a Growth Mindset for Success
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Emma Collins is a tech writer for Productivity Spot. She's been writing tech tutorials & how-to guides on Windows, Android, iOS, Social Media, Data Recovery, Cybersecurity, Gaming, and more as a tech writer for over 6 years. You can find her work on many established tech websites, including Hackr.io, MakeUseOf, Help Desk Geek, Online Tech Tips, Switching To Mac, HandyRecovery, Cleverfiles, and more.