Teaching to Change Lives by Howard Hendricks

Hendricks, Howard. 1987. Teaching to Change Lives. Sisters, OR: Multnomah Publishers.

Communication and caring compassion is the key to teaching. Hendricks uses the acronym, “TEACHER,” to relate his concepts. The examples of teacher-student interaction shared in his book illustrate the importance of communication and show of care that motivates students to learn. He states, “The greatest teachers are not necessarily the people up front with high visibility. They are the people who have great heart. They communicate as a total person, and they communicate to the total person of their hearers (87).”

Another way to be a “person of impact,” is to be “vulnerable” with one’s students. Not only is communication and compassion important, but preparation. Hendricks relates, “Teaching involves a delicate balance between facts and form, between content and communication, between what you teach and how you teach it (77).” If teachers want to prepare their students to “think, learn, and work,” then four skills need to be taught: “reading, writing, listening, and speaking” (48). Though this book is written for Sunday school teachers, it contains helpful suggestions for use in other teaching venues. For instance, Hendricks suggests a “self-examination” in which teachers ask three questions: “What are my strengths; what are my weaknesses, and what do I have to change?” (35).

Great teachers are the ones who continue to grow in their own personal learning. Hendricks’ book is a good reminder for all teachers of the main purpose for Bible teaching. Even if the teacher teaches in a secular institution, the basic principles of the book can be utilized. For instance, students will be more willing to try harder and put more effort into their school work if they know the teacher truly cares for them. This book has changed the way I teach. It made me realize that teaching is more than lecturing to students.

Copyright © 2008 M. Teresa Trascritti


  1. How to Get Six Pack Fast · April 15, 2009

    The style of writing is quite familiar to me. Have you written guest posts for other blogs?

  2. teresa4christ · April 15, 2009

    Hi “Six Pack Fast”!

    I write a lot of book reviews, maybe that’s why it seems familiar?

    Thanks for your comment!

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