HARLEM, GA (WJBF)

Samantha Clary used a little international inspiration to lead her to a career in the classroom. Inspiration she uses every day at North Harlem Elementary School.
“I started going on mission trips with my grandparents,” Clary says. “We’ve been to Jamaica. I’ve been to Alaska on a mission trip. We worked with young people and it really just set in my heart, my calling for helping children and teaching them and helping them grow.”

Mrs. Clary knows she’s the first impression for her first time students.

“It really gives me more pride in my job. It makes me feel more important, as I am that first look is what school is like and how teachers are. This is a safe place. We love you. We want to help you. We want to give you everything you need. It just feels good to be that.”

They may only be in kindergarten, but these students stay super busy. They’re developing skills that will serve them throughout their academic careers.
“We were doing different stations, comparing numbers. Bigger, what’s more, what’s less. We’re doing fun Thanksgiving things. We’re also transitioning, doing some i-ready work on the i-pads.”

And Mrs. Clary knows she can’t do this alone. She leans on her fellow teachers and her parapro to help students do their best.
Miss Daubeck is amazing. She’s a Godsend. She helps me pull children and helps me give them those skills that they really need.”
It’s a team approach that yields impressive results. Even just a few months into this school year, Samantha Clary has witnessed so much success.
“I have seen emotional changes,” she says. “Students just falling into the routines of school and loving it. I’ve seen my students go from not knowing any letters to reading, which is amazing. It just blows my mind. “