Founder, Creator, and Coach at SpritelyMind
Masters in Education – Curriculum & Instruction with an emphasis in Gifted Education
Bachelors of Arts – Political Science / International Studies
Private homeschool teacher and consultant
Certified Classroom teacher, grades K - 8
College Preparatory: Advising, test prep, and essay writing
Over 20 years experience in education, working in classrooms and homes throughout the United States, and around the world.
The SpritelyMind Story
SpritelyMind is the result of 20 years of trial and error homeschooling my own kids, as well as educating hundreds of children in homes and classrooms all over the world.
For me, homeschooling was labor intensive. Despite all the curricula, materials, and resources available, I spent a great deal of time, money and effort modifying and preparing lessons to suit the needs of each of my kids. It left me drained and with little energy for actual instruction. I felt like I was missing out on my children; like the whole point of educating them myself was lost.
In 2008, I began working with homeschooling families, advising, coaching, and administering assessments. It quickly became clear that they too, seemed to be on a never ending quest to find the perfect curriculum, philosophy, or strategy for their children. A new approach would work for a few months, then it was back to the drawing board, leaving parents riddled with insecurity.
The issue was not with the parents or children. The problem is that curriculum publishers repackage traditional classroom materials and market them to homeschoolers, when the two couldn’t be more dissimilar.
Classrooms are manufactured institutions that are insulated from the real world. They are designed to educate in mass and keep order, so instruction and materials must largely be one-size-fits-all, and move at a steady pace for a span of about 180 days. Obviously, homeschooling is completely different.
The fact is, real life often gets in the way of homeschooling, especially when we use programs with unyielding schedules and pacing meant for a classroom. I personally homeschooled my kids through chronic illness, learning differences (a.k.a. disabilities), giftedness, divorce, single parenthood, full-time employment, death of family members, remarriage, entrepreneurship, and multiple long distance moves. In spite of it all, each one of my children graduated and moved on to college by or before the age of 14.
The key to their success was flexibility. When life threw curveballs making our typical routine difficult or impossible, my kids would adjust accordingly, never missing a beat. Moreover, once I made the transition to what is now the SpritelyMind way of homeschooling, gone were the days of feeling guilty or inadequate about changing the curriculum yet again. So was the worry that my kids were falling behind academically.
For the last decade, I have been developing SpritelyMind, a line of customizable curricular guide books, assessment tools, and coaching services based on the philosophy that learning is living and parenting is teaching; neither are separate from the other. SpritelyMind combines the latest in what science is revealing about child development and learning, along with twenty years experience as a parent, classroom teacher, and homeschool consultant.