Impassioned teacher of love
A song of heart for students
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As third graders in high school, students often bear precarious agitation in their minds when choosing career, picking majors, or entering universities. Heartfully understanding this distress and sincerely wanting to lessen the load of unease, Kim Kyung-hoon (Department of education, ‘01), a teacher at Haneul Academy, has composed a song with meaningful lyrics for his apprehensive students. Bringing students to tears and causing a touching sensation in their hearts, the song sure seems to last in the students’ mind for their entire life and be a valuable memento of their high school times.
As a teacher and a musician
As a teenager, Kim always dreamed of becoming a teacher, as much as he aspired to become a musician. Not being able to pick one of the two, he concluded that he would be both at the same time: a teacher who composes music. “I was motivated by my high school teacher who also wrote and published several books. His main job was teaching and his side job was writing. That was the exact lifestyle that I pursued.” He began to compose songs when he was a teenager and nurtured the other dream concurrently.
With his first music album released in 2008, by the name of Acoustic Project as a solo artist, Kim intermittently composed songs dedicated to other people. The name Acoustic Project, does not only mean unplugged music, but also means to include all acoustic matters, all sounds of music. The digital single album he released last month, titled ‘To the Sky’(Click to listen) is a song dedicated to his third-year students at his school, with the music video featuring his students. Witnessing what his student are going through and understanding how tough it is, Kim was determined that he would write a song for them.
As a teacher, Kim always tries to teach students how to live happily, not stressfully. Though it may seem as if entering a good university is the greatest hardship and the most important step of achieving success, it is only a stepping stone which last only temporarily. “I tell students to look beyond and find what will bring them happiness in the long run. Life is not an equation that needs perfect calculation answers and,” remarked Kim.
Be brave and not timid, To the Sky
The title ‘To the Sky’ epitomizes the lyrics of the song, coinciding with the name of the school—Hanuel in Korean is sky. Students who do not know about their potentials consider themselves as the ugly duckling and remain close to the ground but I wanted to make them aware that they will one day soar to the sky like a beautiful swan. “When I sit my students individually for counseling, the first thing they do is crying. It shows how frustrated and anxious they are. I wanted to reflect their mood and portray it in a song with a hopeful message in hopes of encouraging them.”
The lyrics are largely divided into two parts: the first half of the song from the perspective of the students, and the remaining half of the teacher’s. The intention of doing so was to reach the students’ heart more directly and to sound as if the song was reading their minds. In that way, bigger wave of sympathy and emotion could be aroused in students’ hearts.
Each line of the lyrics is meant to resonate with the mood of the students in the first half of the song, when it is describing their feelings from their very perspective. In the second half, cheerful messages from the perspective of a teacher, from Kim’s perspective, is delivered, heartening each students who is struggling amidst her angst.
Jeon Chae-yun firstname.lastname@example.org
Photos by Moon Ha-na
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