Meet Kimberly Harlan

“I've seen growth in my kids, and most importantly a solid relationship between them and their coaches. We feel so grateful for these amazing humans that have entered our kids' lives. My kids' words exactly: ‘These teachers actually want to be here. They really care!’ ” -Katie M., Parent in Kimberly’s Cohort

Emily Veno
August 14, 2023

Prisma is the world’s most engaging virtual school that prepares kids for the ever-changing world of the future. Our team of educators have a diverse background of experience on the cutting edge of teaching and learning, whether they’ve worked in brick and mortar schools or dynamic online environments. In our Meet the Team blog series, you’ll get to read more about the amazing educators behind Prisma.

Kimberly Harlan is a Mentor Coach in Prisma’s Middle School Program who started in the 22-23 school year.

Where are you based? 

I am based in Central Arkansas.  About 20 minutes north of Little Rock!

Tell us a little bit about your background in education prior to joining Prisma. 

I taught for 10 years in public school. I have my licence in Mid-Level education (which means grades 4-8 in Arkansas). I also have my licence in Gifted and Talented Education.  I've taught all subjects for 5th and 6th grade, and also spent a year teaching K-12 Gifted and Talented students.

What is your favorite part about your role at Prisma?

I truly cherish the opportunity to cultivate meaningful relationships with my learners. Establishing a foundation of trust enables me to serve as a valuable partner in their educational journey. I derive immense satisfaction from gaining insights into their lives and experiences, as it enhances my ability to contribute effectively to their learning process.


You’re well-known as one of our most tech-savvy coaches. What are your top strategies for engaging learners in a virtual environment? 

Getting kids engaged in a virtual setup can be a bit of a puzzle at first. But I've noticed that giving them different ways to participate really does the trick! I also always make sure to get input from the kids themselves. I ask them how an activity felt, or if they have any ideas to make it better. It's not just great for generating new ideas on my end, but it also gives them a chance to put on their thinking caps.

If you could pick one skill that all kids should master to prepare for the world of the future, what would it be and why?
Critical thinking! The ability to analyze situations, consider different perspectives, and make informed decisions is becoming increasingly crucial in our complex and rapidly changing world. Critical thinking empowers individuals to adapt to new challenges, solve problems creatively, and navigate the vast amount of information available. With this skill, kids can approach any situation with confidence, ask the right questions, and confidently contribute to shaping the future in a meaningful way.

What do you like to learn about, or what is something new you learned recently? 

I have a genuine passion for learning! An interesting trick I've discovered is the random button on Wikipedia. It's a neat way to explore different topics and articles, and I often use it during moments of waiting, like at the doctor's office.  I have a passion for soaking up knowledge across a wide range of subjects: history lets us peek into the past and understand how we got to where we are today, economics gives me a glimpse into the intricate dance of money and resources that shapes our world. Don't even get me started on technology – it's like living in the future with all these mind-blowing innovations. But my appetite for learning doesn't stop there; I'm all ears when it comes to expanding my understanding of the world around us.

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