PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Adrianne Kelly has been teaching music at Minadeo Elementary School for 31 of her 33 years with the Pittsburgh school system. But retirement looms. This year is her last.

“I’ve really taught so many talented students over the years,” she recalls. “And I’ve learned so much from them. I’ve just really been blessed to have been here.”

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She explains her recipe for success.

“If I’m not having fun, I know that they’re not having fun. I just do it for them, because I know they will learn it more and enjoy it more, and have more memories of it,” she says.

The Minadeo chorus is known for its holiday medleys at the Allegheny County Courthouse. Practice pays off.

“This is telling me to crank it up,” she says, moving her hands on circles above her head. “Crank it up, Mrs. Kelly!”

“It means whenever you crank up the brain, you want to get it right so you focus,” a chorus member explains.

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The popular teacher is also known for giving kids nicknames.

“It helps me to remember all of them, because I’ve taught so many over the years,” she says. “One’s ‘Charmer,’ ‘Sunlight,’ ‘Princess’ is a popular one.”

The inspiration she has instilled doesn’t end once her students move on. As a matter of fact, three of her former students are now music teachers in the Pittsburgh Public School system.

“She put together the chorus and the instrumental, and she still has time to teach. So she shows me that we can do anything if we actually try,” says a chorus member.

“She was my first music teacher, and I think it’s going to be the best,” another adds.

“I’m really surprised that I’ve touched so many lives in so many ways,” the teacher concludes. “And I’m happy that I was able to help so many of the students.”

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