Definition of teach in English:

teach

Line breaks: teach
Pronunciation: /tiːtʃ
 
/

verb (past and past participle taught /tɔːt/)

  • 1 [with 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
    More example sentences
    • As well as the teacher having all the knowledge to teach the kids, the kids can actually help the teacher learn something.
    • I was happy to have family in the business to teach me the knowledge of the business.
    • The education system that would teach girls to read would also empower millions of illiterate boys.
    Synonyms
    educate, instruct, school, tutor, give lessons to, coach, train, upskill, ground, enlighten, illuminate, verse, edify, prepare, din something into, indoctrinate, brainwash; drill, discipline, put someone through their paces; North American teach schooltrain, show, guide, instruct, demonstrate to, give someone an idea, make clear
    informal learn
  • 1.1 [with 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
    More example sentences
    • This guide contains all the skills and requirements as well as the background and reference information needed to teach the skills.
    • 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.
    Synonyms
    give lessons in, lecture in, give instructions in, inform someone about, familiarize someone with, acquaint someone with, instil, inculcate, explicate, explain, expound
  • 1.2 [no object] Work as a teacher: she teaches at the local high school
    More example sentences
    • Both of our teachers have taught in the public schools and consider this a much better situation.
    • This same person was the only participant in the study ever encouraged by another member of the academy to teach at a community college.
    • Many teachers are unqualified to teach according to local public school standards and most don't know how to relate to American-raised children.
  • 2 [with object and clause] Cause (someone) to learn or understand something by example or experience: she’d been taught that it paid to be passive my upbringing taught me never to be disrespectful to elders
    More example sentences
    • 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.
    • The experience taught me how much it's possible to learn away from home in a new environment.
    • Experience teaches us, however, that humility often departs when the remembrance of imperfections grows more distant.
  • 2.1 [with object] Encourage someone to accept (something) as a fact or principle: the philosophy teaches self-control
    More example sentences
    • The people growing up with these ideologies usually accept what they are taught.
    • By teaching ideology instead of facts, our schools are erasing the nation's collective memory.
    • In 610 CE, the main principles of Islam were taught secretly.
  • 2.2 informal Make (someone) less inclined to do something: ‘I’ll teach you to forget my tea,’ he said, and gave me six with his cane
    More example sentences
    • That'll teach you to mess with the Tengon regime!
    • She'd teach him for messing with every girl he saw.
    • And that, my redneck cousin, will teach you to mess with a town boy!

noun

informal Back to top  
  • A teacher: she came to say ‘Hi!’ to her old teach
    More example sentences
    • 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.

Phrases

teach someone a lesson

see lesson.

teach school

US Be a schoolteacher: she taught school until 1920
More example sentences
  • I had such affection for it as a kid, and I later taught school and high school out there for about seven years.
  • 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.

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'.

Usage

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

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