- to impart knowledge of or skill in; give instruction in: She teaches mathematics.
- to impart knowledge or skill to; give instruction to: He teaches a large class.
- to impart knowledge or skill; give instruction.
- Informal. teacher.
Origin of teach
- Edward, known as Blackbeard. died 1718, English pirate, active in the West Indies and on the Atlantic coast of North America
- (tr; may take a clause as object or an infinitive often foll by how) to help to learn; tell or show (how)to teach someone to paint; to teach someone how to paint
- to give instruction or lessons in (a subject) to (a person or animal)to teach French; to teach children; she teaches
- (tr; may take a clause as object or an infinitive) to cause to learn or understandexperience taught him that he could not be a journalist
- Also: teach someone a lesson informal to cause (someone) to suffer the unpleasant consequences of some action or behaviour
Word Origin for teach
Old English tæcan (past tense and past participle tæhte) "to show, point out," also "to give instruction," from Proto-Germanic *taikijanan (cf. Old High German zihan, German zeihen "to accuse," Gothic ga-teihan "to announce"), from PIE *deik- "to show, point out" (see diction). Related to Old English tacen, tacn "sign, mark" (see token). Related: Taught; teaching.
Old English tæcan had more usually a sense of "show, declare, warn, persuade" (cf. German zeigen "to show," from the same root); while the Old English word for "to teach, instruct, guide" was more commonly læran, source of modern learn and lore.