Welcoming Clark’s new teachers
September 3, 2016
Armond Khodagulyan goes from being student to teacher
“Since I’m new here and my students, as freshmen, are new here too, we’re starting fresh and going through it together,” said Clark’s new Algebra teacher, Armond Khodagulyan. Khodagulyan joined the Clark staff this year after having been a substitute for Glendale Unified School District for a year. Before being a substitute, Khodagulyan tutored for two years at Bravo Learning Center while going through graduate school at California State University, Los Angeles to become a physicist.
“I enjoyed teaching so much as a tutor I decided to become a sub and see if I would enjoy that too, and I did,” Khodagulyan said. He also said that being a substitute showed him that he should be a teacher since it is something that he always wanted to do.
Khodagulyan was a part of the first freshman class at Clark Magnet High School back when he was a high school student. “Coming back to teach at Clark feels natural,” he said. “It feels continuous.” He said that it actually took him a while to call his old teachers by their first names and that a lot of them remember him as their student.
Khodagulyan said that he plans on not just giving grades but also helping his students mature and figure out what they like. “My goal is to have my students stop thinking about points and grades and instead start looking at the bigger pictures as far as math is concerned,” he said.
“Being another nice, qualified member [of the math department], he’ll improve the math department,” said math teacher Amir Ghavam. “He’s young and energetic; he’s sure to bring in some fresh ideas.”
Panthers welcome new Health teacher onto campus
After the retirement of Clark’s former health and career preparation teacher Randy Tiffany, Clark Magnet welcomes a new addition to the class, Breanna Hutchinson.
Hutchinson graduated from the Indiana University of Pennsylvania with a degree in Exercise Science, which she said is what compelled her to take the position of health teacher. She formerly taught Physical Education in Burbank and Arcadia high schools. She said that she prefers teaching at Clark because she feels there is more opportunity here to connect with her students.
“I’m a true-at-heart P.E. teacher,” she said, “but I love being interactive with my students and conducting conversations with them. I feel like I’m very animated; If I’m bored, then I know that they definitely are too, and I try to keep it lively in here.”
Hutchinson also worked as a trainer at Catz Physical Therapy & Sports Performance Clinic in Pasadena, where she trained adolescents starting from the age of five, as well as grown adults, college students and even current professional athletes. She said that in spite of her experience working with older students, she much prefers working with younger ones because she feels they are easier to communicate with. “I just think there’s more to them,” she said. “And I think there’s a lot going on in their lives that I can try to help out with through communication.”
Hutchinson said that her fun and comfortable classroom environment is what enables her to connect with her students. “I like to make sure the kids feel comfortable enough to give me some insight into their lives and tell me what’s going on,” she said. “I try to give them as much freedom as possible. For example, you’ll find that my enrichment is much different from most teachers’. If they want to talk and move around they can; the kids still work and I’m fine with that.”
Her method of creating a fun classroom environment is definitely appreciated by her students. Freshman Leeanna Azaryan said that Hutchinson’s class is the one and only place she can be herself. “She’s so incredibly nice to us,” she said. “She talks to us like we’re adults and understands what we go through. It’s clear that she really cares about us.”
To Hutchinson, the realm of her job reaches far beyond the Clark campus. “I hope for the kids to derive life lessons from their knowledge and use them in work and in their personal lives beyond high school. I think that is my main goal as a career prep and health teacher.”
Nonetheless, Hutchinson said that she has an immense amount of excitement to be part of the Clark staff. “I’ve heard great things about this school,” she said. “And so far I see them to be true. I’m honored to be part of the family and excited to be a panther veteran in the future!”