Matilda – Miss Honey
The character of Miss Honey perfectly illustrates the ability of a teacher to transform their students’ lives by simply being there for them. Support, appreciation, motivation are incredibly important when teaching young children. With her uninterested parents and headteacher, where would Matilda be without Miss Honey?
Pay It Forward – Eugene Simonet
Eugene is an amazing social studies teacher who seeks to inspire his students to be better people. One assignment to change the world and Trevor’s ambitious idea to “pay it forward” are all it takes to inspire the viewer, as well.
Dead Poets Society – John Keating
Mr. Keating is quite an inspirational and charismatic teacher. He actively encourages his students to step out of their comfort zone and embrace the idea of free-thinking. He wants to shape people who are going to be masters of themselves, unwilling to give in to the oppression they face. Mr. Keating taught us all the value of doing what we love and pursuing our dreams, and perhaps, that we are very fortunate to be living in a different time.
Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children – Miss Alma Peregrine
Not exactly a teacher, but a headmistress, Miss Peregrine’s top priority is to keep the children under her care safe, even if that means creating a secret time loop to protect them from the modern world and its dangers. What’s particularly notable about this film is the theme of acceptance. Miss Peregrine’s love and devotion to the children is more than obvious, as she perceives all of their ‘peculiarities’ as special talents. In addition, Jacob, the boy who accidentally finds himself in this time loop, accepts everything he sees as ‘normal’, proving the point that children do not label, stigmatise, and stereotype by nature - this is rather a learned behaviour by following an adult's example.
Whiplash – Terence Fletcher
J.K. Simmons’s character in this film is quite controversial, as it leaves the viewer contemplating what makes a good teacher. Do we judge a good teacher based on their character or the results of their teaching? Now with more and more social movements against violence and abuse emerging, this film is more relevant than ever. It's high time we re-evaluated teachers who still believe verbal and physical abuse have a place in 21st century education and start thinking how we are going to deal with this problem so as not to hear of any such cases again.