Patrick Farenga brings more than 36 years of fieldwork, advocacy, and personal experience to help parents and children learn in their own ways. Farenga is a writer and education activist who addresses academic and general audiences about working with children, not on children, to help them learn.
Farenga continues the work of John Holt, one of the founders of the modern homeschooling movement who started Growing Without Schooling magazine (GWS) in 1977. GWS was the nation’s first periodical about learning without going to school. After Holt’s death in 1985, Farenga published GWS until 2001.
Farenga speaks as a homeschooling expert at education conferences around the world as well as on commercial radio and television talk shows in the United States (The Today Show, Good Morning America) and abroad. Farenga writes about homeschooling and self-directed learning for a number of publications and operates the John Holt/Growing Without Schooling website, www.johnholtgws.com. He is also a founding member of Alliance for Self-Directed Education.
Farenga’s books include The Beginner’s Guide to Homeschooling (Holt, 1998), Teach Your Own: The John Holt Book of Homeschooling (Perseus, 2003), The Legacy of John Holt: A Man Who Genuinely Understood, Trusted, and Respected Children (HoltGWS, 2013), and How to Report Unschooling to School Officials (HoltGWS, 2015).
Farenga has also written chapters about homeschooling in Encyclopedia Britannica (2014, 2010), A Parent's Guide to Homeschooling (Mars Publishing, 2002), Creating Learning Communities (FER, 2000), The Handbook of Alternative Education (Macmillan, 1994), The Exhausted School (Oxford Village, 1992), Schooling At Home (John Muir, 1990), and The Encyclopedia of School Administration (Sage, 1988).
From the time she was about three years old, Heather could often be found setting up her stuffed animals at desks pretending to teach them. Raised in a family of educators, she followed her passion for teaching by graduating from Azusa Pacific University with a bachelor’s degree in liberal studies, a minor in Spanish and a California multiple subject teaching credential. Heather was hired right out of college as an elementary teacher and loved every minute. In fact, she still keeps in touch with some of her very first learners to this day!
Heather has homeschooled her own two children for 11 years, gaining extensive curriculum knowledge in grades kindergarten through high school. Heather is the Director for iLEAD Exploration, a growing independent study charter school servicing personalized learning/homeschooling families. She is passionate about supporting others in their unique homeschool journey and loves to create new learning experiences for all types of learners. She definitely believes that learning can be fostered in any environment and counts her own children as some of her most effective teachers.
In her “spare” time, Heather enjoys going to fun restaurants and movies with her family, taking her dogs to the beach, snuggling with her cat Henry, riding bikes, playing soccer, cooking and traveling anywhere and everywhere! She has especially enjoyed traveling internationally and world schooling in some of her favorite spots including Spain, Italy, Switzerland, Canada, Mexico and Cuba!
Jamie is the content manager at Homeschool.com. Education has been an integral part of her life for over 25 years in both the classroom, homeschool, and as a principal. Six children later found her dissatisfied with traditional schooling and homeschooling became the better fit. After 14 years of homeschooling, Jamie loves to share her experience and help other homeschoolers find success.
Glanowski is a motivational speaker, author, business development consultant and founder of Eden Hope Academy and My Story is Beautiful. Her passion is to help children thrive in their education through independent thinking and a solid Christian foundation.
Traci King is the Lead Guidance Coordinator with Sage Oak Charter School. Traci holds her multiple subject credential and is also certified in math, history, science, and English for secondary students. In addition, Traci has her College Council Certification from UC San Diego and has helped many homeschooling families plan for life after high school; from where to take the PSAT/SAT and ACT to test-optional colleges and career exploration guidance. Flexibility and personalized schooling do not have to end after 8th grade. For instance, homeschooled high school students have more opportunities to accept internships, job shadowing and community college courses due to their flexibility. Also, many high school students chose to continue with their current co-op and partner with other homeschooling groups to create their own Student Council, yearbook, virtual clubs, Proms, and graduation. If Homeschooling is working for you, don’t stop after elementary school! We will share many resources to help support you in homeschooling through high school.
Rebecca is the author of several popular homeschooling books including - "Homeschooling and Loving It!" and "Homeschooling For Success." She homeschooled her children from preschool through high school and takes great pleasure in helping the next generation of homeschooling parents get started with their own children. Rebecca does radio and TV interviews, encouraging others to give homeschooling a try.
Kris Krajewski is a licensed certified Speech/Language Pathologist with 27 years of experience in a variety of settings, including hospitals, skilled nursing facilities, home health, clinics, and schools. Her areas of special interest include improving communication skills in early intervention, Sensory Processing Disorder, Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), Dyslexia, and foreign and regional accent modification. She has maintained a private practice since 2009. She has gained experience in delivering services through teletherapy, providing speech/language therapy services online to schools and to individual clients with a variety of ages and needs.
Over the years, Kris has seen the delivery of services change with the advent of new technology, and even though she describes herself as more of a “Fisher Price” therapist, she has experienced the value of providing online teletherapy services to those who do not have direct access to a therapist. Kris embraces the notion that traditional therapy techniques can be modified to fit the needs of individuals seeking online services. With “real world” interpersonal communication as the ultimate goal, Kris feels that teletherapy can be effective in the beginning stages of therapy for individuals who seem to gravitate to technology rather than people. She feels that providing teletherapy allows therapists to explore their creativity and grow professionally as they work to develop strategies and techniques that translate to success in this new, nontraditional format.
Kris is a proud native of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. She graduated with her B.S. in Audiology and Speech Sciences from Michigan State University and her M.S. in Communicative Disorders from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She currently resides in White Lake, Michigan with her husband of 31 years. Kris has 3 extraordinary children and is an avid rescue mom for retired racing greyhounds.
Wayne Kroeplin is an award-winning Technology and Engineering Education instructor. Wayne had the privilege to begin technological resource for students. Innovators Tribe provides teachers and homeschool parent/teachers powerful curriculum and resources to help identify, encourage, and train student innovators to be a part of a technological society.
Marsha Ganz, M.Ed. and Maria Lowenstein, M.Ed. believe teaching and learning should be fun and they seek to promote this mindset through their work. Marsha and Maria are literacy specialists at VocabularySpellingCity, an award-winning company dedicated to helping K-12 students build vocabulary and reading comprehension. Both women have master’s degrees in Elementary Education with over 40 years of combined professional experience in education, including time spent as classroom teachers, district literacy specialists, instructional coaches, and writers and developers of online professional development courses for teacher re-certification. Their lively presentation will engage your children and provide you with strategies you can use immediately.
Karen Meyer is a lifelong educator committed to helping parents of preschoolers become their child’s best and most important teachers. Karen ’s innovative ideas became the foundation for Get Ready 4 Kindergarten’s award-winning preschool-at-home programs. Karen gives parents the tools and resources to build the learning environment all young children need to succeed.
Yegor is on his mission to make your kids smarter and stronger by utilizing every tool ans scientific finding that is out there. There is a connection between a brain and a body. So it is to no surprise that Yegor is focusing on early physical development promoting #makeSmartMoves and exploring possibilities of engaging your kids at home. Yegor himself did every possible sport when was a kid while graduating in top 10 of hos class at one of the most selective high schools in Ukraine.
After spending 4 years at Microsoft working for Xbox team as one of his assignments he now wants to get your kids off the couch and make them physically and mentally healthy.
Larry Shiller grew up with an intense curiosity and love of math. His teachers tried to feed his hunger as much as they could before he began teaching himself algebra at age 9. He went on to earn a perfect score on the Math SAT, a math degree from MIT, and then a degree from Harvard Business School.
Shiller is author of Software Excellence (Prentice Hall), ShillerMath, and ShillerLearning Language Arts. As a professional violinist Larry has played with myriad symphonies, including the Toledo Symphony, Miami Chamber Symphony, Fort Lauderdale Symphony, Princeton Symphony, Riverside Symphonia. Always the learner, he won a U.S. National Championship in Quoridor, was finalist in the Montreal Open Backgammon Tournament, and got a pilot's license in his spare time. Shiller was host of Cox Radio’s Unconventional Wisdom radio show airing in the New York City area and has spoken at numerous industry and non-profit conferences.
Shiller discovered his true calling when he enrolled his daughter in preschool. No one told Larry it cost $30,000 a year for Montessori school. Surprised at the price, Larry decided to teach his daughter with Montessori without taking out a loan on his New Jersey home.
ShillerMath was born.
Larry studied all of the Montessori training and books he could find. He went to the Princeton Center for Teacher Education, a world-renowned AMS Montessori teacher training and certification institute, to learn from the smartest minds in Montessori. Since 2002, thousands of parents have joined Larry to homeschool with ShillerMath. In response to customer demand, ShillerLearning Language Arts was released in 2016. ShillerLearning is growing rapidly as parents and bloggers spread the word of amazing success stories.
Today, Larry's greatest joy comes from sharing his expertise and bringing the joy of learning to families with all types of learners.
Katie is a fulltime Time4Learning employee and fulltime homeschooling mom to two boys, ages 13 and 18. Never intending to homeschool, she pulled her oldest out of the public school system in the middle of 1st grade and gave homeschooling a try. 13 years (and only a few bumps!) later, they’re still homeschooling and loving it, with her oldest graduating in 2017.
Kristy Smith is the Director of Options Learning for Compass Charter Schools. She lives in Tarzana, CA with her husband and three homeschooling children, ages 7, 13, and 16. Kristy has been involved in independent study charter schools for the past 12 years, both online and home study models, and before that taught all levels of high school math at a brick and mortar for several years. She appreciates that there are educational options in California. Along with family and church, her passions include math education, baking, the Spanish language, and reading.
Chad Stewart has worked as a professional animator in film and television for the last 27 years! He has worked with both Walt Disney Feature Animation and Sony Pictures on films like Emperor's New Groove, Tarzan, and Polar Express. Now he brings his wide experience—both from the field and from being an expert homeschooling dad—into teaching students ages 11-18 about this fascinating art form.
Christina is a new homeschool mom to her amazing 11-year old daughter. She is a full-time working career woman with a background in marketing, writing, and law. She is also a Girl Scout volunteer and loves going on adventures with her daughter and their troop!
Claudia grew up in Switzerland and moved to the United States in her early 20’s. She earned her B.A. in English and German at California Lutheran University (CLU), where she graduated summa cum laude. She then went on to receive her single-subject teaching credential in English and her Master’s Degree in teaching from CLU as well. After teaching middle and high school students at local public schools, CLU approached her to teach as a part-time adjunct faculty member in the German and English departments.
When her own kids started to approach college age, she decided to look for full-time work and found a position at a local charter school in Ventura as the Curriculum and Assessment Coordinator. During the time there, she learned as much as possible about independent study charter schools, measurement, and curriculum. She had the privilege to work under the director and was able to participate in such important tasks as the WASC self-study, board presentations, creating math intervention strategies, the graduation committee and more. After that, two other charter schools approached Claudia to build their homeschool programs, which she did for three years. Both programs were successful and had a long waitlist of students.
In 2013 Claudia joined ROA. During her time at ROA, the school successfully renewed its charter, received a 6-year WASC re-accreditation and a $600,000 career pathways grant. The school’s student population has doubled in the last two years as well. Claudia loves working with ROA’s dedicated and amazing staff and enjoys the daily interaction with the school’s amazing students and families.
During her free time, Claudia loves to work with animals. She used to breed and raise alpacas and worked with the Sheriff’s K9 Search and Rescue team, where she trained her dog, Toby, to be a search and rescue dog. She loves the outdoors, enjoys her sunrise hikes out in the local hills and spends time with her friends and family. Claudia has 3 children, all of whom are now off to college and grad schools at various universities throughout the country.