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Kathryn Haffner is new vocal teacher

DCHS Journalism

Kathryn Haffner

By Isabel Grafel

Kathryn Haffner is another new teacher at Decatur Community High School. Ms. Haffner teaches junior high and senior high vocal and music theory.

Ms. Haffner grew up east of Hoxie in Tasco and graduated from Hill City High School. She earned her bachelor’s degree from Kansas State University.

What would her students be surprised to find out about Ms. Haffner?

“I come from a very large family,” said Ms. Haffner – “ 7 older brothers and sisters, 14 nieces and nephews, and lots of aunts, uncles, and cousins.”

Ms. Haffner said she wanted to be a vocal teacher because she’s been singing her whole life. “I’ve been taking vocal lessons since I was eight years old.”

She said she chose to teach in Oberlin because it’s close to home. “Oberlin has always had a great music program, and it is exciting to have this opportunity.”

Ms. Haffner said that the best thing about teaching is “working with students who are eager to learn and better themselves and seeing the small successes that students often don't even notice themselves.”


She said the worst thing about being a teacher is when students say, “I can't” or simply don't try. “It's so disrespectful of your own worth,” she said.

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What makes a good day at school for Ms. Haffner? “When I get to see students make a new discovery, make a new friend, or stand up for what they believe in.  I love when students are passionate about something. It's what life is all about.”

Ms. Haffner’s hobbies include baking, reading, helping on the farm, and fishing. She is also learning to play the banjo. “This year I hope to build on traditions and build musicality in the students,” said Ms. Haffner.

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