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Quotes About Failure for Kids and Students

Failure?  This does not seem like the kind of topic to find on InspireMyKids!  But lets take a deeper look.

If you were to study the people who have had the greatest impact on the world, you will find a few things in common.  At IMK, we have focused many of our stories on the habits and traits of these people.  Things like perseverance, honesty and hard work.

But there is one thing you might not expect to find in common among them!  Failure!  Yes, that’s right, failure!  They all have experienced failure.  Lots of failure!  But they all have learned from failure and used this learning to become a better person and better at their craft.

As Abraham Lincoln once said, “I am not concerned that you have fallen — I am concerned that you arise.” 

Now check out these inspiring quotes about failure for kids and students below:

  • “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” – Thomas A. Edison
  • “There is only one thing that makes a dream impossible to achieve: the fear of failure.” – Paulo Coelho
  • “Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.” – Albert Einstein
  • “The only real failure in life is not to be true to the best one knows.” – Buddha
  • “It is hard to fail, but it is worse never to have tried to succeed.” – Theodore Roosevelt
  • “If you fell down yesterday, stand up today.” – H.G. Wells
  • “Failure is an event, not a person.  Yesterday ended last night.” – Zig Ziglar
  • “We are all failures – at least the best of us are.” – J.M. Barrie
  • “You just keep pushing. You just keep pushing. I made every mistake that could be made. But I just kept pushing.” – Rene Descartes
  • “It is fine to celebrate success, but it is more important to heed the lessons of failure.” – Bill Gates
  • “My great concern is not whether you have failed, but whether you are content with failure.” – Abraham Lincoln
  • “Only those who dare to fail greatly can ever achieve greatly.” – Robert F. Kennedy
  • “When you take risks you learn that there will be times when you succeed and there will be times when you fail, and both are equally important.” – Ellen DeGeneres
  • “You’re not obligated to win. You’re obligated to keep trying. To the best you can do everyday.” – Jason Mraz
  • “I’ve missed more than 9,000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. Twenty-six times I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.” – Michael Jordan
  • “Failure is delay, not defeat. It is a temporary detour, not a dead end.” – Denis Waitley
  • “The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
  • “The only real mistake is the one from which we learn nothing.” – Henry Ford
  • “If you’re not prepared to be wrong, you’ll never come up with anything original.” – Ken Robinson
  • “Failure is good as long as it does not become a habit.” Michael Eisner
  • “Remember that failure is not the opposite of success, it’s part of success.” – Unknown
  • “I want to do it because I want to do it. Women must try to do things as men have tried. When they fail, their failure must be but a challenge to others.” – Amelia Earhart
  • “There is no failure except in no longer trying.” – Elbert Hubbard
  • “It’s failure that gives you the proper perspective on success.” – Ellen DeGeneres
  • “Each mistake teaches you something new about yourself. There is no failure, remember, except in no longer trying. It is the courage to continue that counts.”  – Chris Bradford
  • “It’s not how far you fall, but how high you bounce that counts.” – Zig Ziglar
  • “Giving up is the only sure way to fail.” – Gena Showalter
  • “Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm.” – Winston Churchill
  • “Failure is the opportunity to being again more intelligently.” – Henry Ford

Here is an inspiring video, including some of the people quoted above, showing how failure was part of their life, but did not define them:

This video describes “the gift of failure” with a story about a famous invention.

Additional Resources:

Topics for Discussion:

  • Which are your favorite quotes above?  Why?
  • Why do think failure plays such an important role in success?
  • Can you think of anything that you have learned from failure in your life?
  • Do you know anyone who is successful and has failed?

Teacher Features:

  • Here is a link to a Critical Reading Skills worksheet that you can use for elementary school students.
  • Here is a link to a Critical Reading Skills worksheet that you can use for middle school students.
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