Amazing Koehn wins an award for his excellent teaching

Koehn has inspired many Edmond Memorial students and will not be stopping any time soon.

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Koehn has inspired many Edmond Memorial students and will not be stopping any time soon.

Grace Swisher, Staff Writer

Edmond Memorial High School’s orchestra teacher, David Koehn, was recently awarded the 2022 Oklahoma State Superintendent’s Award For Arts Excellence in Music for his exceptional teaching. This award is the highest accolade from the state of Oklahoma to teachers and truly does reflect amazing musical talent.

Koehn has been teaching at EMHS for over 15 years, and continues to impact more students every year. While he typically makes feisty jokes in class and is private about his emotions, respect and love is a mutual feeling between Koehn and his students. 

“I teach the students that will change the world. I just hope they have good memories of orchestra and encourage their children later in life to take this art form as an important part of their education,” Koehn said. 

Although Koehn claims he can’t see his achievements, the orchestra does. His students feel connected to him in their own way, and because of him, this class has been a fun and welcoming environment for teens every day for years. 

“Since having Koehn as my orchestra teacher since eighth grade, you can always tell he wants the best for us and wants us to succeed in our future,” junior Aleeza Azeem said. “By seeing the positive connections everyone has made with him, he has definitely proved that.”

Koehn understands what it’s like to be young and having a hard day, his constant acts of grace towards students having bad days never go unappreciated. He lifts everyone up with humor and positivity to put a smile on students faces. 

“Koehn is always positive and makes funny jokes. I love how he can light up a room with his humor,” junior Katie Brown said. 

He is constantly pushing his students to better themselves, whether in or out of the orchestra classroom. Through motivational talks, partially on topic metaphors or jokes with hidden truth, he encourages students to reach their full potential. 

“I truly do not feel that I am great and honestly I know I make mistakes and errors everyday, but I try to share those moments with my students so we can all learn from them,” Koehn said. “Life lessons of finding something every day to make those around you better is a quest that I try to pass on so my students can find applications of orchestra concepts in the rest of their day.”

In all of his carefully thought out lesson plans, the main goal of them all come back to not only improving themselves, but also the people around them. This is a skill that not only students use in orchestra to improve overall tone, but is a useful tool that will greatly benefit his students for years to come. 

“The challenge of connecting to orchestra students makes this a rewarding daily activity and I enjoy the freedom to choose the music that I feel best fits each ensemble,” Koehn said. “The students that I have the opportunity to stand in front of everyday and try to share what little I know is what makes Memorial great.” 

Koehn finds it a struggle to relate to teens, but believes this is what makes teaching at EMHS great. A success of connecting concepts in young minds is like a win of no other. He finds his job to be rewarding because his students accomplish great things, however they could never do it without his help. 

“Mr. Koehn has made many positive impacts on me where I thoroughly enjoyed spending time in his class which made me decide to stay in orchestra from 8th grade all the way till my senior year,” Azeem said. 

The impact Koehn has made on hundreds of students lives for years is what makes him such an inspiration and a star teacher. He has lifted people up everyday and inspires the orchestra to reach their goals, making Koehn a true asset to EMHS and every bit deserving of the Superintendent Excellence in Music award.

Contact Grace Swisher at [email protected]