Aim Academy Teachers
Mary Margaret Holcomb
Mary Margaret Holcomb is an art historian and artist who is passionate about sharing her love of art with others through teaching. She received her master’s degree in the History of Art, Theory and Display from the University of Edinburgh, Scotland, and her bachelor’s degree in Art History from Arizona State University. She is currently studying for a Master of Arts in Teaching with an emphasis in Art Education at Mississippi University for Women, and she hopes to begin working towards a PhD in the near future. She is a professor of art at Tarrant County Community College in her home state of Texas where she teaches both in-person and online. Prior to teaching, she worked in supplemental instruction at Tarrant County Community College. Additionally, she was an essay tutor with Pearson where she assisted students strengthen their essays across disciplines.
When Mary Margaret is not teaching or studying, she enjoys reading and collecting books. Discussing said books is a favorite pastime. Additionally, she loves learning more about philosophy, theology, music, and history, all with the goal of infusing any gained knowledge into her instruction. She also enjoys making art, taking photographs, learning new languages, and working on sewing projects. If inspiration strikes, you may find her writing for her latest art historical project.
Jack has been passionate about journalism since high school and found a love for the practice through his homeschool classes. Jack has been critiquing and building up his peers since his college days at Liberty University, working as a copy editor and news editor for the school newspaper, The Liberty Champion. From there he and a group of friends started an independent student-run news source, The Lynchburg Torch, to provide an unbiased, uncensored, and ethically-sound platform that the school did not provide. He served as editor-in-chief, assigning stories, keeping up with contacts, and breaking news that would have never been heard. After graduating with a BS in Journalism in 2019, Jack moved to New York City where he immediately started work as a researcher and production assistant at Three Uncanny Four Productions, a podcast joint venture with Sony Music. There he has worked on breaking new details in the Jeffrey Epstein case with many seasoned professionals in the audio field.
Instructor email: [email protected]
Jill Panyard has her hand in leadership, education, convention planning, and theater. She is the current head of the Theatre Academy for the Hershey Area Playhouse in Hershey, PA. Along with the teachers in the Academy, she helps to develop and teach programs for children ages 5 to 18, including themed sessions, summer camps, and junior musicals. She has also been involved with the award-winning Encore! Home School Productions for the past 16 years in leadership and directing plays and musicals. She particularly enjoys coaching young actors in learning theater skills and developing their talents on stage. Jill is a native New Englander, making Pennsylvania her home for 36 years. She has enjoyed theatre training through many avenues including her alma mater, Syracuse University. She, and her husband Jim, are empty-nesters, having had the privilege of raising and homeschooling two sons in Central PA.
Instructor email: [email protected]
Colette Bailes has been teaching homeschooled students and supporting home educators for 25 years. She was the founding middle grades English teacher at Creative Home Educators Support Service (CHESS) in Pennsylvania, where she taught fourteen years. Colette homeschooled her own five children: one has completed a doctorate in education, one received a Fulbright research fellowship, one has finished law school, and two who are pursuing business careers. She is known for compassion and warmth as well as the academic excellence she inspires in her students.
Intro to Literature and Academic Writing
Dr. Lauren Bailes
Lauren was homeschooled K-12. She was an AP Scholar and a National Merit Scholar Semi-Finalist, which resulted in an academic scholarship to Eastern University, Templeton Honors College, where she received her BA in English Literature and Secondary Education. Lauren taught Middle School English Language Arts (ELA) in Brooklyn, New York for four years and served as an ELA instructional coach for five years in Columbus, Ohio. She has written English curriculum for grades 5-8. Lauren is an author on Readers in Residence, Volume 1 and also taught Middle School Tools and Pre AP English Language through Aim Academy for four years. She has also received her Master’s degree in Literacy Instruction from Columbia University Teachers College and her PhD in Educational Leadership and Policy from The Ohio State University. She is currently an Assistant Professor of Educational Leadership at the University of Delaware.
Middle School Expository Writing
Introduction to Research Writing
Advanced Research Writing
French 1, 2, 3, and 4
Heather A. Eades
For as long as Heather Eades can remember, she has been both a writer and an artist, and loves teaching young people to do the same. Earning her B.A. in Visual Arts and English from Otterbein College in Westerville, OH, along with her studies at Columbus College of Art and Design, helped launch her professional career in publishing where she served as an editor and art liaison for SRA/McGraw-Hill, Inc., helping to create the elementary art program, Art Connections: the companion series to the middle and high school texts utilized in her art classes. Her passion and enthusiasm for helping create fun, innovative learning experiences led her to earn her MA in education with a focus on creating arts-based, literacy-rich curriculum for all students. With over twenty years of professional experience in publishing, her specialty has become designing, writing about, and implementing creative, arts-based curriculum and educational “fun-tivities” for all ages.
And while she enjoys her professional work mosaic of writing articles and book projects, editing online course material for Colorado Christian University, and managing social media communications for Aim Academy by night, by day Heather is passionate about her first and favorite work: the fine art of homeschooling—teaching her own and other students in their homeschooling community. Heather Eades is excited to begin her fourth successful year of teaching online with Aim Academy—this year introducing her art classes to the Aim Academy community!
During her graduate program, Mrs. Eades developed and implemented an early childhood art program for an inner city preschool, which she now continues to teach locally to preschoolers in her own community with the help of her two teenage daughters. She has also taught art classes to middle schoolers for many years at a local Christian art collaborative, and to elementary through high school students for the past 8 years at their local homeschool co-op, as well as private art lessons. “Mrs. E.” loves to teach art with the intent and encouragement of bringing joy to others and developing/using the arts for Good in the world. While Heather’s own specialty area is mixed-media illustration, exposing her students to experiment with as many styles, techniques, and media in the arts as possible assures that her class times are never boring and helps students to find their favorite creative outlets. Mrs. Eades is excited to bring her latest collection of “fun-tastic,” hands-on art experiences to Aim Academy, with the same authentic, light-hearted teaching style found in her writing classes!
In her spare time, Mrs. Eades loves to laugh, draw, read, hike and camp with her family, co-lead youth ministry with her husband at their church in Denver, …and can be found consuming obscene amounts of coffee.
Email: [email protected]
Nate Gilbert graduated from Cedarville University in 2002 with a B.A. degree in secondary social studies education. Since then he has taught and tutored many students, primarily in the subjects of history, government, and economics. Nate has worked in a variety of settings, such as teaching in Beijing, China, and at some local schools. He now focuses on utilizing his passion for social studies to teach online classes that stimulate his students’ critical thinking skills and understanding of society.
Mr. Gilbert also assists his wife in homeschooling their children. His hobbies include reading philosophy books, playing with his children, and outside activities. As a family, the Gilberts are involved in their local community and church fellowship.
Kathryn (Bell) Gomes
I was homeschooled k-12 and I loved it, but math was not the strongest part of my home education. I’ll never forget my first day in a calculus classroom at the University of Pittsburgh, I was so unprepared! I survived and was able to graduate with a major in mathematics, but not without noting quite a few things I wish I had done differently in high school. Now that I am homeschooling my own kids I’m committed to helping other home schooled students enter college math classrooms prepared and confident. I am also the author of Apologia’s elementary math program for home school families to help young students experience the beauty and fun of mathematics at an early age. Find out more here.
When I am not working on something math-related I’m probably trying out a science experiment with my three little ones, cooking something spicy (we love Indian food!), or running in a local Philly race (look towards the back of the pack . . . I’m quite slow).
SAT Math Prep
The field of psychology is not only my career; it is also my passion. You might even call me a “psychology nerd.” Much of my free time is spent reading about new and interesting developments in the field. I have taught Introductory Psychology classes to homeschool students and college students and have taught AP Psychology for the past 13 years. Over the past four years, I also developed a series of self-improvement classes for junior high and high school students on the topics of GRIT, Growth Mindset, Getting Things Done for Teens, and Conquering Procrastination. My teaching has also taken me into the corporate world where I have developed online seminars for healthcare providers on the topics of stress, communication, job burn-out, anger assessment and management, and boundary setting. I have 39 years of experience as a counselor in the field of individual, marriage, and family counseling where I had the opportunity to instruct individuals in developing new and more productive behaviors. When I am not reading something new about psychology I enjoy gardening, running, and taking care of my dogs and fainting goats. My degrees include an M.ED. in Counseling Psychology and a B.A in Psychology, both received from Temple University in Philadelphia, PA.
I attended Millersville University, earning a B.S. in Special Education, a M.S. in Elementary Education, and a Reading Certificate. After teaching for several years in both public and private schools, I left the world of teaching to start my own family, discovering the amazing world of home schooling! I serve as a home school evaluator in Pennsylvania and have spent more than 20 years teaching at several home school co-ops and successfully graduating all four of my children. Currently, I also teach 4th-5th graders in a small private school. I love teaching middle school students that writing, literature, and even grammar can be fun!
English Foundations 1
English Foundations 2
American History Through Literature
U.S. Presidents and Fifty States
Susan Habacivch earned a BS in Chemical Engineering from Washington University and a BA in French from Regis College. After working for several years in the fibers industry, she began homeschooling her four children in 2003. She has been tutoring and teaching science and mathematics in local coops since 2003 and has been teaching online since 2010.
Pre-Calculus with Statistics
Intro to Chemistry
Intro to Physics
I love history, I love teaching, and I love students. I put a great deal of thought and time into constructing courses that are engaging, challenging, and well-organized. I also care a great deal about humanizing the on-line experience, and you will see that priority woven into many aspects of my course. I majored in history at Swarthmore College, where I also earned my high-school teaching certification. I also did graduate work at Widener University with a focus on English and education. I worked for four years at an inner-city classical high school, where I taught American History and American Literature and served as Dean of Students. In 1997, I earned my Masters in History at Temple University, and soon began teaching college courses for Drexel University and Peirce College for adults returning to school. In 2005, I began teaching online, and to date have independently created nine different online college courses, ranging from survey American History courses, to the History of American Business, Colonial History, Revolutionary History, and Western Humanities surveys. I have been awarded “Outstanding Adjunct Faculty” by one of the universities I currently teach for. I am also an official grader of AP US History exams, receiving extensive training in the process and participating in College Board and ETS seminars. Despite all my experiences at the high school and college level, and despite my appreciation for the more profound academic and cultural expressions, I am nevertheless a shameless fan of English Premier League soccer, The Simpsons, Napoleon Dynamite, and MST3K.
Western Civilization I
Western Civilization II
AP US History
Dr. Karen Joseph
Dr. Karen Joseph earned her Doctor of Chiropractic degree from Palmer College of Chiropractic. After working for several years, she began homeschooling her 3 children in 1989. As a homeschooling mom, she has taught every subject at every grade level, but her favorite subject is science! She taught science classes, ranging from Middle School Life Science and Earth Science to High School Biology to Honors Human Anatomy and Physiology at a Pennsylvania Public Cyber Charter School for 12 years. She was the recipient of the 2009 Pennsylvania Charter School Teacher of the Year.
Dr. Joseph believes that science should be fun, and she works to create classes that have a strong hands-on component, and that will ignite in her students a passion to know more about the wonderful world they live firstname.lastname@example.org
Dr. Terri Kanner
Dr. Kanner received a BS in Biology from the University of Toledo in Toledo, Ohio and a Doctor of Dental Surgery degree from The Ohio State University. Following post-graduate work at Children’s Hospital National Medical Center in Washington, D.C., she practiced full-time in Silver Spring Maryland. Dr. Kanner took a sabbatical from dentistry to homeschool her two children. In 2010, Dr. Kanner launched a career in online science education teaching AP Biology through PA Homeschoolers. In addition to teaching online courses, Dr. Kanner also maintains an active adjunct professor status in the greater Boston area at colleges including Northeastern University, Regis College and Massasoit Community College. Her course offerings include Biology, Biology for Engineers, Microbiology, Anatomy and Physiology, and Chemistry. She is particularly passionate about helping students to understand and appreciate how science directly affects their everyday life.
Kristen Lauria is a lifelong student who has become the teacher. In second grade she was found stealing teacher’s editions from her public-school classroom to teach her younger best friend at home. She’s since progressed to buying her materials legally, but her love of teaching hasn’t wavered. She spent 4 years in the Navy learning about nuclear reactors and went on to finish her BS in Physics with a minor in Math graduating Cum Laude. She also was inducted into the physics honor society, Sigma Pi Sigma, having attained a GPA in Physics of over 3.0. She has her MS in Teaching, Learning, and Curriculum from Drexel University and is certified to teach physics and chemistry in the state of Pennsylvania.
In addition to teaching for Aim Academy, she also homeschools her own 2 children in middle school, counsels her adult stepchildren in what adulting really means, and helps her husband with restoring their 200-year-old farmhouse one slow-moving project at a time. She also runs her own tutoring company and teaches at her local homeschool co-op. In her free time (which is rather scarce at the moment) she loves to read and spend time outside enjoying God’s creation. The teacher is now becoming the student as well, as Kristen is beginning a PhD program at Lehigh University to further hone her teaching skills and improve the integration of technology to bring the material alive for her students.
She hopes to share her love of math and science with all of her students here at Aim Academy. While she can’t change the difficulty of what students learn in her classes, she will do her best to make them approachable and interesting. She hopes to show her students how everything they will encounter in their textbooks will apply to their own lives; not just in the future, but today.
David and Rachel Nance
David and Rachel Nance have been teaching Aim Spanish classes together for the last several years, in addition to working together to raise and homeschool their five children. Both have deep roots with the Spanish language and with education. In addition to living in Spain with their family in 2019-2020, they each previously lived in South America (David in Uruguay and Rachel in Bolivia) and have traveled extensively through Latin America and Europe.
David has a BA in Spanish Teaching from Brigham Young University, an MSE in Curriculum and Instruction from Arkansas State University, and a Master’s in School Management from the Universidad de Alcalá de Henares in Spain. He has taught online Spanish classes since 2007, spent four years as the foreign language curriculum specialist at the Arkansas Department of Education, and worked for one year as an English language teaching assistant at a vocational school in Spain.
Rachel has a BS in Elementary Education, with an emphasis in Early Childhood Education. She taught elementary school for four years before having children of her own. In addition to being fluent in Spanish, Rachel studied ASL for four semesters while she was in college. When a Deaf couple started coming to her church four years ago, she finally got to put her learning into practice and became one of the interpreters for the couple. Rachel has taught Spanish and ASL classes in her home in addition to teaching Spanish for Aim Academy.
The Nances love spending time with their family. They love to travel, learn languages, spend time outdoors, read, and play tabletop games.
Bonjour! I’m Lisa Reissig, and I’m excited to be a part of Aim Academy. I started to learn French at the age of twelve, and I’ve loved it ever since- the language and the culture. I have a BA in French from Wheaton College (IL), and an MA in Instructional Systems Design from the University of Maryland Baltimore County. I’ve spent time studying in France as well as traveling to Montréal and Québec City.
For the past twenty-five years, I’ve had the experience of teaching elementary through high school French in both brick-and-mortar schools as well as online schools. I’ve homeschooled my daughters which has been a great teaching position! I hold a TEFL certificate enabling me to teach English to people from all over the world. I love being able to share my passion for language to students in a creative, engaging, and caring manner.
I currently live on Maryland’s Eastern Shore with my husband, two daughters, and black cockapoo dog. When I’m not teaching, I like to cook, cross-stitch, watch baseball, and eat chocolate, the world’s best food.
Vive le français: An introduction to French
Kristen K. Roy
Kristen is a Colorado native. She earned her teaching degree in Secondary English Education from the University of Northern Colorado. Kristen has been a homeschooling mom for over 16 years and is now a proud grandma as well. She has enjoyed teaching in both public and private school settings. For the last decade she has been teaching at her homeschool co-op and started teaching online this last year and loves helping students grow in their natural abilities to write. Teaching students how to analyze literature and poetry as well as create their own poetry, research papers, essays, short stories and analytical papers is one of her passions. She also enjoys riding bikes, meeting with friends and having family gatherings!
Instructor email: email@example.com
Lili Serbicki is an experienced Advanced Placement English instructor with a professional background in writing, media, editing, and advertising. She is a 2009 graduate of Franciscan University of Steubenville with a BA in Communication Arts and a Minor in Philosophy. This upcoming school year will be her tenth year teaching high-level online courses, including AP Literature, AP Language, Creative Writing, poetry composition, argument and debate, and advanced test preparation classes. She has many years of experience providing student tutoring in areas of writing and mechanics as well as experience in small print publication and editing; she is a published author of poetry, fiction, nonfiction essay, and creative memoir across multiple literary journals. Over the past decade her students (including all course and tutoring students) have won many Silver Keys and Gold Keys in the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards. In 2018 Mrs. Serbicki received recognition from the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards as “an educator whose dedication, commitment, and guidance are represented by student work selected for national honors.”
Middle School Intro to Fiction
Fantasy and Sci Fi Writing
SAT English Prep
AP English Literature
AP English Language
Lili explains the assignments and goals of her AP English Literature course.
Lili discusses her AP English Language course.
Lili describes the assignments in her Creative Writing class.
Susan Spivey is enthusiastic about sharing her love of literature with students and finds tremendous joy in teaching. Susan earned her MA in English from Arizona State University and her BS in Journalism from the University of Maryland. She worked as a newspaper reporter and editor for several years before starting her family. Susan also worked as a freelance writer for magazines and as a substitute teacher in public schools. She has taught English for many years and has been teaching for AIM Academy since 2015. When she is not reading a book, discussing a book, or teaching about books, you can find her in her garden, likely with a book nearby.
American Literature (Minicourse)
Amy Wallace is a homeschool mom of three with two brilliant homeschool graduates- yes, it can be done! Her oldest daughter is in graduate school at The Medical University of South Carolina, studying for her PhD, and her second daughter attends Anderson University, studying for the ministry. Amy is still happily homeschooling a fantastic high schooler. Amy earned a Bachelor of Science in Counseling and Guidance from the University of Louisville (Go CARDS!) and regularly applies her degree to writing Dark Chocolate Suspense—high-action suspense that delved deep into heart issues—for Random House/ Multnomah and Harvest House Publishers. Her counseling degree also comes in handy when homeschooling, speaking, and teaching numerous English and writing courses.
In her spare time, Amy loves hiking, basketball, running, reading, scrapbooking, and healthy eating. Her greatest passion is to glorify God by enjoying Him to the fullest and showing by example what it means to dream big and live a life that touches hearts and leads people into a deep relationship with Christ.