Get Schooled With The 15 Most Inspirational Teachers In Pop Culture History

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  • Dangerous-Minds-(Getty)

  • Welcome-Back-Kotter-(Getty)

  • To-Sir-With-Love-(Getty)

  • Boy-Meets-World

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  • Freedom-Writers

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  • School-of-Rock

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  • Yoda

Teachers are without a doubt the most important people in the world. They fill our heads with knowledge and put up with us when hormones turn us into literally the worst people imaginable. As graduation season is here, and folks get ready to leave their educators behind, we’d like to pause for a moment and recognize the individuals who tried to teach us about Shakespeare while we were busy sticking carrot sticks up our noses. Sadly we didn’t all attend the same school and share the same terrific tutors, so we’re going to shout out the most inspirational teachers from across the pop culture spectrum!

These fantastic (and fictional) figures thought outside the box to reach their students. Whether a wanna-be rocker or a former Marine, they found new and innovative ways to connect with their pupils. These teachers realized that you don’t just need a blackboard and books to teach kids, but also imagination and creativity. From Robin William’s tear-jerking turn in Dead Poet’s Society, to Michelle Pfeiffer’s badassery in Dangerous Minds, or even Ms. Frizzle’s out-of-this-world animated adventures, it’s safe to say that these characters inspired the real teachers of the world. And they, in turn, inspired us. Head on up to the gallery and check out 15 pop culture teachers who taught us life lessons that we remember today!

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

-Japanese Proverb