Rachael Clarke - Kindergarten Teaching Assistant
My name is Rachael Clarke and my pronouns are she/they. I am so happy to join the ABS team this 2023 school year as Mrs. Warren's teaching assistant. Before coming here, I was the Lead Preschool teacher at Piedmont Forest School where I facilitated outdoor child-directed learning immersed in nature year round. I also worked part time as a Teacher/Registered Behavior Therapist to children and teens on the autism spectrum with ABC of NC. I earned my Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology with a concentration in Health and Human Services from Appalachian State University in Boone, NC. There I focused on social work programs and early childhood development. Afterword, I made my way to Forsyth Technical Community College to complete ECE requirements. I've recently just completed my foundations training with Cedarsong Nature School out of Asheville, NC.
As both a previous forest school teacher and an exceptional education teacher, neurodiversity, nature based education and anti-ableist values are incredibly important to my framework of teaching and/or assistant teaching. In my free time I can be found practicing my guitar, going on day hikes experiencing the flora and fauna, playing with my wonderful daughter (who is a rising 1st grader at ABS), cuddling with Woody Guthrie (our cat), and enjoying the company of our new silly dog, Freddy.
"The pedagogy of care dissolves the false dichotomy that there is a split between early education and care. In the past, caring may have been viewed as a minimum standard of keeping a child safe and clean, or as something anyone could do. In the emerging future, caring is viewed as an intentional teaching practice that connects us to one another, and requires specialized knowledge about children, about learning, growth, and human development." - Carol Gaborone Murray, M.Ed.