Last night on Close Up I learnt about Robert Loretz, Massey High School’s Head of Music, who has been voted New Zealand’s Most Inspiring Teacher.
Deeply committed to his students, he uses drama, humour and unorthodox methods to engage his pupils and instils in them not only a love of learning, but a desire to achieve excellence and as a result, a greater belief in themselves and their abilities. Excellence is a word we often shy away from, but excellence is not perfection – it is aiming to be your very best self, and then some. It is within the grasp of all of us and the motivation to be our best self often flows from the inspirational example of others.
When listening to Loretz talk of his teaching, it is obvious he loves both his music and his job with great passion. He also speaks from the heart and uses other words that we sometimes feel a bit uncomfortable about, such as soul and spirit, and imbues them with a very modern relevance so that they seem very natural, which is, I think, as it should be. These are words with profound meaning that express the deepest parts of us that are capable of being inspired. They respond with powerful emotions that motivate us and propel us towards taking actions that express that inspiration.
Talking of music, Loretz says that it has the type of beauty that can touch the soul. And leading on from this, he says he sees inspiration as getting the spirit into someone – and says that acknowledging and believing in people is what gives them the sense of their ability to be great.
- What inspires you?
- Who do you find inspirational?
- How does that inspiration motivate you to be and do the best that you can?