Singing the truth

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Adria Herscher playing piano. Photo by Ella Lucas

  Adria Herscher, director of choirs and music department chair, is considered by many of her students to be one of the more influential teachers at HR. Though she has succeeded in a lot through all her years of teaching, she has also faced many hardships. Yet, you can still find her dancing and singing with her students, with a smile on her face.

  “Each year I learn something new,” said Herscher. “My first year of teaching was the hardest. Especially because I had surgery August 5th and had to have a substitute teacher my first two weeks of choir here.” Herscher received this surgery to donate one of her kidneys to a previous coworker in need. Herscher was the matching blood type to her co-worker and didn’t hesitate to accept the task that was given to her.

  As well as diverting energy into a slow recovery, Herscher also had to put lots of time into addressing a situation with the Talons choir that the previous teacher had caused. “The teacher who taught before me for two years ran into some issues trying to change the dynamic of Talons,” she said. 

  The program had changed so quickly that the Talons choir was no longer a class. “I brought it back as like, an after school club, and then the year after, I was able to bring it back as a class,” she said. Herscher believes that all great teachers take things from the ones before.

  “To be considered an influential teacher, it is really big shoes to fill,” she said. “I can have a lot of responsibility for things that have nothing to do with music.”

  Herscher said that she had to learn to use empathy in and out of class to help her students feel welcome. She said, “I take it very seriously. It’s a high level of responsibility that people trust me to come to me with anything and everything. So I try to listen first and then help come up with solutions and come from a place of understanding and trust.”

Ella Lucas, Guest Reporter

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