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Music Teacher • Skyline Middle School: Nicholas Ronaghan    (Continued)

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“I lied! One more time! Again!”

Then the piano playing ceases with “Good job! Today we are going to work on ‘The Water is Wide.' This is a slow, mournful piece. Sing it with tall vowels and watch the endings on i's.” These may sound like adult instructions, but one thing Mr. R. never does is treat his students like kids. He never babied us and always pushed us. Mr. R. continually challenged us to improve and to give people a reason to treat us as more than just middle schoolers. What we accomplished in that classroom gave us a sense of self-worth.

Some days we had what Mr. R. called “story time.” We would take our places in the room, and balanced on a little gray stool, Mr.

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