Bakersfield High School teacher bringing light to the classroom

Local News

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) —The novel COVID-19 pandemic has changed everything for the world of education. One Bakersfield High School teacher is using this as an opportunity to light up education.

Tamara Clark and her husband A.J. Clark have looked to the light for inspiration on this new teaching tool they call ‘Light Up Education & Innovations’. Now she’s breaking the glass ceiling of COVID and using that glass as a board to teach and connect with her high school students virtually.

“Well in the crisis mode of education that we found ourselves in back in march of 2020 when the pandemic hit and really took hold here in Kern County, it became very clear to educators everywhere that we needed a way to connect to with our kids over this new thing that we were doing, called Zoom, Google Meets, Google Classroom, virtual learning, different learning management systems,” said Bakersfield High School teacher Tamara Clark.

Tamara and her husband A.J. Clark are high school sweethearts. They met at Bakersfield High School and now Tamara teaches there. When the pandemic hit, Tamara like many educators had to quickly pivot her teaching style.

“She saw a video of a teacher that made a whiteboard out of some plexiglass and some clamps and so after seeing it she asked me if I could build her something like that,” said A.J. Clark.

A.J. is the Bakersfield Fire Battalion Chief but took on this honey do task with no worries. The first board A.J. made was made out of plexiglass, but they found that scratched too easily, so he went back to the drawing board. Now, the newest 3.0 design should be ready in a few days. They have a grant from State Farm to produce at least 12 more boards which will be distributed to more educators.

“We are in process with the county and the city to acquire a business license so that we can get these light boards out to any educator that is wanting to light up their education and light up teaching,” said Tamara.

Tamara says after this year she believes education is going to have a fundamental shift. Educators will focus on serving students across the learning spectrum.

“In my 18-year educational career, I have seen the students that I traditionally work with have a really hard time with traditional school,” said Tamara. “They don’t want to get up early, they are teenagers, they automatically are creatures of the night. They learn on their own time when they can learn, and those kids were thriving.”

You can find more information about Light Up Education & Innovations by clicking here.

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