Bill Gates talks about his favorite teacher

Bill Gates’ favorite teacher is Mrs. Blanche Caffiere at View Ridge Elementary School in Seattle. She was his fourth-grade teacher, and he talked about her in a recent interview with CBS News. He also talked about how important teachers are and how they can make a difference in their students‘ lives.

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Bill Gates' favorite teacher

In talking about his favorite teacher, Bill Gates also explained why she was his favorite. He credited her with initiating his "love for learning."

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"Great teachers help students get excited about learning," he said, adding that Mrs. Caffiere was "that kind of teacher" for him. He explained that when he entered her class, he was a "very shy fourth-grader with a messy desk and terrible handwriting."

Gates also said he tried to keep his classmates from finding out that he loved to read because he was afraid they would make fun of him. He thought his classmates would find it strange that he liked to read, but Mrs. Caffiere "pulled me out of my shell by sharing her love of books."

He added that she challenged him to read difficult books and asked him questions that got him thinking about the book. He also said she listened to everything he said.

How great teachers make a difference

Bill Gates said Mrs. Caffiere is his favorite teacher because she inspired his love of learning but also showed him how important teachers are. He said she helped inspire the work of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and its effort to help all American children have excellent teachers.

The billionaire philanthropist also said thank you to teachers who are working with students amid the pandemic, either in person or online. He said they are "changing lives and doing amazing work."

The Independent called attention to a blog post in which Bill Gates also talked about his favorite teacher. He said he was able to thank her for the important role she played in his life and for triggering his love for learning "at a time when I easily could have gotten turned off by school." She died in 2006, but he did have a chance to thank her before then.