Definition of teach in English:

teach

verb

  • 1with object and infinitive or clause Impart knowledge to or instruct (someone) as to how to do something.

    ‘she taught him to read’
    ‘he taught me how to ride a bike’
    • ‘As well as the teacher having all the knowledge to teach the kids, the kids can actually help the teacher learn something.’
    • ‘You know, he's talking about using scientific research to teach kids how to read.’
    • ‘We also have three training organizations prepared to teach workers how to install it.’
    • ‘What will we learn next, that education schools don't teach educators how to teach kids to read?’
    • ‘Again, a reasonable guess is that some instructors might be prepared to teach some students this way.’
    • ‘Phonetics is the way the children are taught to read and write in the Montessori method of education.’
    • ‘His mother taught him to read at age three, and ‘once I knew how to read, I was off on my own.’’
    • ‘My mom started teaching me to read at age three, and I never lacked for books and magazines and there were no restrictions on what I was allowed to read.’
    • ‘A carpenter wrote his thanks to Weatherly for teaching him how to read instructions.’
    • ‘In either case, it illustrates how teaching children to read in Spanish transcends the school grounds.’
    • ‘I was happy to have family in the business to teach me the knowledge of the business.’
    • ‘The way I see it is thus: the older folks have a lot to impart to us, wisdom of the ages, knowledge, time available to teach kids to read, etc.’
    • ‘At Oxford University he developed a passion for botany, but finding no-one who could instruct him adequately, he hired a tutor who taught him the new Linnaean precepts.’
    • ‘Although most mosques have programs to teach children to read the Koran and memorize verses, the pesantren is unique because it targets small children.’
    • ‘The charity has educated people about HIV and AIDS, taught women to read, immunised children and helped people rebuild their lives after conflict.’
    • ‘Colleges of pharmacy are changing their curriculums to teach students the necessary knowledge and skills needed to deliver pharmaceutical care.’
    • ‘The choirmaster, Howell Price, taught me how to read music and sing with discipline.’
    • ‘Traditional American Education models call for teaching a child to read between the ages of 7-9.’
    • ‘Talking about adult education, he lauded India's innovative programme that teaches people to read in their mother tongue in just two to three hours.’
    • ‘The education system that would teach girls to read would also empower millions of illiterate boys.’
    educate, instruct, school, tutor, give lessons to, coach, train, upskill, ground, enlighten, illuminate, verse, edify, prepare, din something into, indoctrinate, brainwash
    train, show, guide, instruct, demonstrate to, give someone an idea, make clear
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1with object Give information about or instruction in (a subject or skill)
      ‘he came one day each week to teach painting’
      with two objects ‘she teaches me French’
      • ‘How the information and skills are taught are considered to be equally as important as the award itself.’
      • ‘Interventions can provide the information and teach the skills necessary to implement those strategies.’
      • ‘They had become self-taught sailors on the lake, teaching themselves the necessary skills and knots.’
      • ‘It's not just an education system about teaching literacy and numeracy.’
      • ‘But once the notions take hold that parenting is a job and that the required skills can be taught, we may end up with the idea that the aim is to produce a certain type of product.’
      • ‘Then again, consider the vested interest of all those who teach the subject of English literature.’
      • ‘However, camp teaches the very skills that will allow camps to respond to these opportunities.’
      • ‘The only orderly class I meet in this school is expecting me to teach the subject I know nothing about.’
      • ‘I have just posted up here some of the ‘Middle Eastern Studies’ that you will NOT hear about in most universities that claim to teach such a subject.’
      • ‘Workshops, run once a week to teach the homeless new skills, have been running for a year and this is the first public display of the resulting work.’
      • ‘I teach two AP subjects and have a lot of trouble fitting in all that I would like for the course.’
      • ‘Unsurprisingly it has been found that subjects which are taught in a more innovative and interesting way get better results and better behaviour in those lessons.’
      • ‘I really thank Ben for helping out and getting Ivan to polish up his guitar skills, teaching Charissa her first few chords.’
      • ‘Mountain safety boils down mainly to common sense; you can teach yourself the necessary skills, and there are many excellent books on the subject.’
      • ‘The subjects must be taught in depth at the school level.’
      • ‘Teachers have argued passionately for the opportunity to teach the subject they love, instead of trawling laboriously through past papers.’
      • ‘European Studies is taught as a subject in the school and many students have entered EU organised competitions with great success.’
      • ‘This guide contains all the skills and requirements as well as the background and reference information needed to teach the skills.’
      • ‘When Kate Brookes wants to ask a colleague's advice on how to teach her subject it is not just a case of popping into the staff room.’
      • ‘While the children need to be supervised, Principal McGovern argues that it is an excellent way to teach a specialised subject area.’
      give lessons in, lecture in, give instructions in, inform someone about, familiarize someone with, acquaint someone with, instil, inculcate, explicate, explain, expound
      View synonyms
    2. 1.2no object Work as a teacher.
      ‘she teaches at the local high school’
      • ‘One of the village's primary school teachers, who taught at the orphanage for two days last year, said he would not go back.’
      • ‘This is a book that offers rich possibilities for new directions in teaching at high school and college levels.’
      • ‘He now teaches at Merivale High School, also in Nepean.’
      • ‘Katherine von Duyke has home taught her 11 children for 16 years, and teaches at a homeschool high school.’
      • ‘If not, what anchoring ideologies define teaching in community colleges?’
      • ‘What is not entirely clear is whether their commitment is to teaching or more specifically to teaching in a community college.’
      • ‘Consider the fact that teachers almost universally discount their wages in order to teach in private schools.’
      • ‘He became a secondary school teacher, teaching in schools at Tilberg and Breda.’
      • ‘This same person was the only participant in the study ever encouraged by another member of the academy to teach at a community college.’
      • ‘The three professors whom I determined to have created the most spirit in their classes all taught at a community college.’
      • ‘She has taught at the elementary school level and is currently a teacher educator, preparing teachers to teach in diverse classrooms.’
      • ‘Both of our teachers have taught in the public schools and consider this a much better situation.’
      • ‘The reason the better students give their teachers higher ratings is that most teachers tend to teach to the better students.’
      • ‘One faculty member acknowledged that it was the source of her motivation for teaching at a community college.’
      • ‘When I taught at a community college, one of my students was a forty-five-year-old mom who juggled two jobs and a full academic load.’
      • ‘I taught at the high school in the morning, one class at Nicholls in the afternoon and then went home to the hard work.’
      • ‘Many teachers are unqualified to teach according to local public school standards and most don't know how to relate to American-raised children.’
      • ‘To further complicate matters, teachers generally teach as if all students are at the same place in their learning development.’
      • ‘The majority of these bilingual education teachers taught in transitional bilingual programs.’
      • ‘If they fail to keep up the GTC's standards, they will lose their licence to teach in state schools.’
  • 2with object and clause Cause (someone) to learn or understand something by example or experience.

    ‘travelling taught me that not everyone shared my beliefs’
    ‘my upbringing taught me never to be disrespectful to elders’
    • ‘Our multimedia degree programme teaches students to understand how technology affects business.’
    • ‘Finally, experience teaches us that the fall of a government creates a security gap.’
    • ‘Experience teaches us that if it happens in the United States, it will happen here, sooner rather than later.’
    • ‘The experience taught me how much it's possible to learn away from home in a new environment.’
    • ‘However, don't they always teach us to learn from our mistakes?’
    • ‘When things are going well, experience teaches us that turnouts are relatively lower.’
    • ‘Experience teaches us that integrity may be compromised for convenience or to avoid unpleasant consequences.’
    • ‘The experience of many decades had taught us to understand that the black poor of our country valued a just peace as deeply as they valued their lives.’
    • ‘My experience taught me that an owner should know every detail, from the cooking of the food up to its management, or he will be tricked by his workers.’
    • ‘Experience has taught me that I should be worried if something is constructed using language and concepts which I can't understand.’
    • ‘Things haven't always been as happy for Mick, he has known his share of dark days but experience has taught him that life is precious and to be enjoyed.’
    • ‘Experience taught him that art & words were inextricably bound with consciousness.’
    • ‘Years of bitter experience have taught me that if you don't blow your own trumpet, it's fairly rare that anyone else will do it on your behalf.’
    • ‘The movies teach us to expect violence from the mentally ill - even though it's clear that we have far more to fear from our ostensibly sane fellow citizens.’
    • ‘We must save our heritage, we must learn from lessons taught us from the destruction of Swan Arcade and Forster Square Station to name but two examples.’
    • ‘Thus, discipline is really a process by which adults teach children and convey knowledge about appropriate behavior for various situations.’
    • ‘Experience teaches us, however, that humility often departs when the remembrance of imperfections grows more distant.’
    • ‘When I was coming into the Church, experience quickly taught me that I could not rely on catechesis at the parish level.’
    • ‘He takes a deep breath: ‘But such experiences have taught me about human life.’’
    • ‘Experience teaches us that excess doesn't buy us happiness, that money can't insulate us from pain.’
    1. 2.1with object Encourage someone to accept (something) as a fact or principle.
      ‘the philosophy teaches self-control’
      • ‘Are we teaching them the philosophy and the mission, along with fiscal, staff, and program management skills?’
      • ‘And, of course, think also of tax-supported schools that teach evolution as fact.’
      • ‘Why should schools face such intense opposition, just because they don't teach evolution as fact?’
      • ‘‘Baby Steps’ parents are encouraged to teach life lessons with familiar objects and activities.’
      • ‘Texas has approved biology textbooks that, get this: teach evolution as fact, much to the chagrin of creationists.’
      • ‘This narrow form of sex education fails to take into consideration this fact and teaches a narrow view, thus ignoring diverse ideas on sexuality.’
      • ‘When I was a child, when school was education was much better, we were taught discipline both at home and at school.’
      • ‘But Dr Nelson says those who do not accept and teach Australian values should ‘clear off’.’
      • ‘And of course, Darwinian evolution is taught as fact in the education systems of Mexico, as it is in so many other countries.’
      • ‘By teaching ideology instead of facts, our schools are erasing the nation's collective memory.’
      • ‘The people growing up with these ideologies usually accept what they are taught.’
      • ‘In 610 CE, the main principles of Islam were taught secretly.’
      • ‘Even better is the fact that the program teaches conservative play; they want you to be able to play for a long time and hopefully leave with more money than you came with.’
      • ‘In France, evolution is taught as a fact that you have to learn, and if you try to oppose that, you will be in trouble.’
      • ‘Why not change a great part of that education to teach strength of character in practising abstinence, and learning some moral principles, and teaching the value of marriage?’
      • ‘When they do play, however, they manage to calm angry mobs, encourage world peace and teach vital life lessons - all the usual motivations for today's future bands.’
      • ‘As time went on, Trungpa Rinpoche encouraged me to teach dharma and to step as fully as possible into that role.’
      • ‘By now, someone reading this is angrily muttering, but it teaches the kids discipline!’
      • ‘What a responsibility we have to ensure we teach them God's principles - not man's opinions.’
    2. 2.2informal Make (someone) less inclined to do something.
      ‘I'll teach you to throw rocks at my windows’
      • ‘That'll teach you to mess with the Tengon regime!’
      • ‘She'd teach him for messing with every girl he saw.’
      • ‘That'll teach me to forget the look-but-don't-touch rule.’
      • ‘That'll teach Ipswich ne'er-do-wells to mess with a man's shed.’
      • ‘And that, my redneck cousin, will teach you to mess with a town boy!’
      • ‘‘I'll teach you to mess with him’ he said, pulling out a knife.’
      • ‘That'll teach you to mess with my friend's shop.’

noun

informal
  • A teacher.

    ‘she came to say ‘Hi!’ to her old teach’
    • ‘I had never seen a teach shoot fire from her eyes before, but Miss Gulch looked as if she were only moments away from doing so.’
    • ‘Then we will attach bowling balls to the ceiling on the string and throw them at the teach.’
    • ‘I entered the class interrupting the lecture the teach was giving.’
    • ‘Everyone's eyes shift from the teach, Mrs. Stamos, to us.’
    • ‘I suppose they got annoyed when they came in with a hangover and the teach kicked them out.’
    • ‘Of course, what is new about the teach is that she was sponsored by the City of Oakland and inflicted on public school students.’
    • ‘Guys, do you remember the time were read the Three Musketeers in class and the teach started to call us that?’
    educator, tutor, instructor, pedagogue, schoolteacher, schoolmaster, schoolmistress, master, mistress, governess, educationalist, educationist
    View synonyms

Usage

The verbs teach and learn do not have the same meaning and should not be used interchangeably: see learn

Phrases

  • teach school

    • Be a schoolteacher.

      ‘she taught school until 1920’
      • ‘Matt and Ruth live cozily in Camden, Maine, where he works as a family doctor and she teaches school.’
      • ‘My great aunts worked all through the fifties and sixties, on the farm or teaching school.’
      • ‘A shy, quiet boy who loved the outdoors, Thoreau graduated from Harvard College in 1837, taught school intermittently until 1841, then turned to writing as a career.’
      • ‘Alice Chipman Dewey had taught school before attending the University of Michigan.’
      • ‘I had such affection for it as a kid, and I later taught school and high school out there for about seven years.’
      • ‘My mother was teaching school, but that wasn't income enough for four growing children, two of whom were away at boarding school.’
      • ‘The patient, who had taught school until retirement age, had been self-sufficient all of her adult life.’
      • ‘I teach school and our school colour is red and black.’
      • ‘Troy's wife, Susan, teaches school in Smith Center.’
      • ‘She found her way to New York, where she taught school, until Morris hired her and wooed her.’
  • teach to the test

    • Teach students using methods intended primarily to improve their performance on an examination rather than to enhance their understanding of a subject.

      ‘teachers are being forced to teach to the test so the school can get funding’

Origin

Old English tǣcan ‘show, present, point out’, of Germanic origin; related to token, from an Indo-European root shared by Greek deiknunai ‘show’, deigma ‘sample’.

Pronunciation

teach

/tiːtʃ/