Named Music Educator of the year by “School Band and Orchestra” magazine
School Band and Orchestra magazine have named their 17th annual “50 Directors Who Make a Difference” which highlights some of the best music educators across all fifty states. Band and orchestra directors are nominated the readers, including current and former students, colleagues and peers, parents, and others who’ve had a wonderful experience with the music programs put on by these amazing teachers.
Congratulations to Maine’s representative this year, D. Loren Fields, director of bands at Lawrence High School in Fairfield. Loren has 70 students in his program and has been teaching for 27 years. In addition, Loren is a French horn player in The Downeast Brass. (You may have seen Loren in the Reny’s commercials.)
Each teacher was asked these three questions.
What is your proudest moment as an educator?
Wow, here are several, not necessarily in any order: when a student has that epiphany moment and totally “gets it,” when I see former music students become music educators, when budding student composers write an original piece for our band for us to premiere, and/or when they perform alongside me in a professional ensemble.
How do you hope to make a difference in students’ lives?
I feel it is crucial that every student realize they are unique and special in their own right, that it is “okay” to be different, and that they are safe to be whomever they are. Students also need to feel accepted, protected, and respected as human beings, and to know that they can make a positive difference in the world by sharing their music. I strive to treat every student as I would want my own two children treated. We as music teachers and directors have a proven way to bridge the socio-economic gaps facing our students, music is the great equalizer!
What is the most important lesson that you try to teach your students?
I strive to convey that I value every single one of them for who they are and that mistakes are allowed. Music can be a direct path to our inner core, it is how we channel the passion and translate it into music that uplift others. Not all of our students will be professional musicians, but everyone has the ability to be lifelong learners and musicians. Music can provide an unparalleled counterbalance to diverse careers, keeping things in perspective throughout one’s entire life.
To read the others representing their states please click here.