Man Uses Marbles to Teach
Although he's retired, Barker still makes his rounds at local schools trying to ramp up learning.
"Concrete examples of what they've been talking about in classroom, kind of putting theory into practice," he explained, "geometry and ramps and planes, things like that."
Other teachers appreciate Barker's talent and effort.
"He can take just about anything and turn it into something that's educational, like soda bottles or cardboard," said Janet Stumbaugh, director of Instructional Services.
But, it's not just marbles that make Barker tick. He also makes clocks out of whatever he can find, from hubcaps to baskets. He sells clocks for $8 each to raise money for mission projects at First United Methodist Presbyterian Church in Montgomery City. Barker's Sunday school class helped him raise money for Third-World housing, sent 80,000 pencils to developing countries, and now is collecting tennis shoes.
"If you look at the people around the world, there are a lot of people who have nothing compared to what we have," he said.
Barker hasn't lost his marbles. He just understands that, when it comes to kids, what you put in them is what comes out.
If you want to buy one of Barker's clock, call First United Methodist Presbyterian Church at 573-564-2134.