Anyone who views a teacher film can receive a lot of motivation. Who doesn’t adore the narrative of a teacher who cares so much about their students that they go out of their way to make a difference in their lives?
Every teacher aspires to make a difference in our students’ lives in some manner. Isn’t this, at the end of the day, why we teach?
This is a comprehensive list of the best teacher films of all time, organised by rating. Some of the teachers will inspire you, while others may struggle, and some will be absolutely excellent. They’re all deserving of your attention.

1. Like Stars On Earth (2007)

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Director- Aamir Khan, Amole Gupta

Ishaan Awasthi is an eight-year-old youngster whose world is full of wonders that no one else appears to see. In the adult world, things like homework, grades, and neatness seem to be far more essential. Ishaan, on the other hand, can’t seem to get anything right in class. He is sent to a boarding school to ‘be disciplined’ after he gets into far more trouble than his parents can handle. At his new school, things aren’t much different, and Ishaan is dealing with the added stress of being separated from his family. Ram Shankar Nikumbh, a new art teacher, emerges into the scene one day, infecting the children with excitement and hope.

He asks them to think, dream, and imagine, breaking all the conventions of ‘how things are done,’ and they all respond enthusiastically, with the exception of Ishaan. Nikumbh quickly notices that Ishaan is unhappy, and he sets out to figure out why. He eventually helps Ishaan find himself through time, compassion, and care.

2. Dead Poets Society (1989)

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Director- Peter Weir

Todd Anderson, who is painfully shy, has been assigned to the school where his popular older brother graduated as valedictorian. Neil Perry, his roommate, is very much under the control of his tyrannical father, despite being extremely clever and popular. Professor Keating, their new English instructor, introduces the two and their other friends to the Dead Poets Society and pushes them to challenge the existing quo. Each does it in his own unique way, and is forever transformed as a result.

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3. Remember The Titans (2000)

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Director- Boaz Yakin

In the early 1970s, two Alexandria, Virginia high schools merged to establish T.C. Williams High School. The Titans’ European American head coach is replaced by a North Carolina-based African American coach. When players of different races are compelled to play on the same football team, tensions occur. During the two-week training camp near Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, many of these tensions are relieved. When the players returned to Alexandria, they saw the city in chaos as a result of the high school’s forced desegregation. The community began to embrace the adjustments as the season progressed, thanks to the team’s success. The Titans and the city were closer than ever after the team’s undefeated season.

4. The Chorus (2004)

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Director- Christopher Barratier

Clément Mathieu, a former music teacher, begins work as an inspector at “Fond de l’ Etang” (“Bottom of the Well”), a boarding school for orphans and troubled boys, on January 15, 1949. The vicious director Rachin runs the place with an iron fist, and most of the guys receive harsh punishments for their transgressions. Clément decides to teach the boys how to sing in a chorus in their spare time, and he recognises the musical potential of the rebel Pierre Morhange, the son of a beautiful single mother whom he has feelings for. He also has a soft spot for the little Pépinot, a youngster who looks forward to seeing his father every Saturday by the gate, but whose parents were killed in the war. Clément’s techniques alter the lives of the youngsters, the other employees, and himself.

5. To Be and To Have (2002)

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Director- Nicolas Philibert

What is the best way to learn to live with others and their desires? In a small schoolhouse in Auvergne, director Nicolas Philibert puts this question to Georges Lopez, who teaches 13 students ranging in age from four to twelve. The students assemble in Lopez’s warm and colourful classroom against a backdrop of mountains and countryside, from driving snow to rain to sun, to read, write dictation, cook, and sort things out. After their duties, the older children complete homework with their parents at home. They look forward to the next year at the end of the year, visiting the middle school and seeing the tiny ones who will be arriving in the fall. They learn to live side by side as they study numbers and adjectives with Lopez’s aid.

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6. Not One Less (1999)

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Director- Yi-Mou Zhang

The teacher in a remote mountain community must depart for a month, and the mayor can only locate a 13-year-old girl named Wei Minzhi to fill in. When the teacher returns, he leaves one stick of chalk for each day and promises her an extra ten yuan if there isn’t one less student. Poverty drives the class troublemaker, Zhang Huike, to depart for the city to work in a matter of days. Minzhi, who has a strong will, is determined to bring him back. She enlists the help of the remaining 26 students in raising funds for her trip. She takes a bus to Jiangjiakou City and starts looking for answers. Meanwhile, the youngster is lost and asking for food. Huike and the local school may be saved thanks to Minzhi’s obstinacy.

7. Freedom Writers (2007)

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Director- Richard LaGravenese

A young teacher motivates her at-risk students to develop tolerance, apply themselves, and continue their studies after high school. Long Beach, California is home to Woodrow Wilson High School. The school is willingly integrated, and it is failing miserably. Asians, blacks, Latinos, and a small number of whites not only don’t get along, but they also stick to their ethnic cliques and are members of protective and violent gangs. At the school, there isn’t much teaching or learning going on. It’s a holding facility for young teenagers until they can drop out or are ejected.

8. Mona Lisa Smile (2003)

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Director- Mike Newell

Katherine Ann Watson, a free-spirited and unconventional art history instructor, accepts the challenge of teaching at Wellesley College in 1953. She leaves her boyfriend Paul Moore in California and moves in with Nancy Abbey, a teacher, and Amanda, a nurse. Katherine’s class fails on the first day under the leadership of the snobbish Betty Warren and her pals Joan Brandwyn and Giselle Levy, but her friends and the Italian instructor Bill Dunbar tell her not to be afraid of the kids. Katherine soon discovers that the females are merely waiting to capture Mr. Nice Guy and marry him, and she struggles against Wellesley’s status quo in order to maintain her independence.

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9. Half Nelson (2006)

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Director- Ryan Fleck

Dan Dunne teaches eighth-grade history in an inner-city school in Brooklyn’s heartland. He foregoes the assigned curriculum in favour of spontaneous, yet very moving, lectures about the significance of comprehending history rather than just remembering it. He typically discusses dialectics, or the tensions that exist between two conflicting forces. He’s divided between his desire to make a difference in the world and his growing realisation that he won’t be able to, at least not in the great, awe-inspiring manner he imagined as a young, idealistic college student. He began abusing narcotics as a means of escaping life’s suffering, but it has since evolved into a crutch that bears increasingly enormous psychological burdens.

Dan speaks about how the world is structured into opposing forces in his almost completely black and Hispanic classroom, demonstrating it at one point by arm-wrestling one of his students. His unconventional approach motivates kids in class, but we don’t notice any effects outside of the classroom. The film follows Dan and his connection with Drey, a 13-year-old pupil who discovers him taking crack in the restroom after school one day. Drey understands Dan’s difficulties with life; she is the kid of an overworked single mother whom she rarely sees, and spending so much time alone has made her self-reliant, but also a little rough around the edges.

10. The Teacher (2016)

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Director- Jan Hrebjk

Comrade Mária Drazdechová, a soft-spoken widow and well-connected schoolteacher, arrives to her new class of naive students on the outskirts of Bratislava in 1983, in the last years of Communist government. Mária, the unscrupulous instructor with the perpetual smile, constructs an elaborate network of corruption and exceptional personal favors—for her advantage, of course—with her little black leather notebook loaded with important information about her pupils’ parents’ working position. Then an enraged father, who can’t afford to lose his job, refuses to play along—and pays the price.