2022 Speakers

Find Strength in Community

Greta Eskridge

Greta is a wife of 23 years and mother to 4. After being homeschooled for most of her own education, Greta took her love for literature, writing, and people, and became a high school English teacher. After the birth of her first child, Greta began staying home full time.Greta loves home educating her kids. She finds home schooling to be a deeply creative act, and she loves sharing her passion for good books and outdoor learning with her children. More than anything, Greta loves the way homeschooling allows for forming deep connections with her kids. In addition to home schooling, Greta fills her time with writing, and speaking. Her first book, published by Thomas Nelson, came out July of 2020. Her next book comes out Spring of 2022. Whether writing or speaking, Greta loves encouraging her fellow parents to dive deep into relationships with their children. She is passionate about helping parents connect with their kids through things like books and adventures. Greta brings a message of hope, understanding, and encouragement to everyone who hears her. Her strong faith comes through in her compassionate, joyful heart. She truly loves connecting with people.

Adventuring Together: Connecting to your Kids Through Adventure

Why do adventures build connections? Pulling from her own life experiences, Greta shows the powerful way adventures bond families together. Then she provides practical ways for you to begin building an adventurous life with your own children and connect with their hearts along the way. Whether your kids are young, or you have teenagers already, Greta has ideas to help you get started. She’ll share ideas for both outdoor and indoor adventures, ideas for the family who physically can’t hit the hiking trail, and even ways to adventure through books! Greta wants to give you the tools to make adventures happen, so you will feel empowered to go out and begin connecting with your kids in a deep and meaningful way.

Homeschooling with Confidence

Greta shares parts of her own educational experience as a homeschooled student in the early days of homeschooling. She shares how her parents allowed her to forge her own educational path and the beautiful successes it led to, ultimately shaping the educational journey Greta took with her own children. Greta offers encouragement for parents to follow or create the path that is best for their children from the early years through college, and to homeschool from a place of confidence rather than fear.

Cultivating a Love of Reading

In this talk Greta shares how her own mother cultivated a love of reading for herself and her 3 siblings. She shares reasons why parents should cultivate a love of reading and books in their own children, as she provides concrete, simple ways parents can do this. Greta ends with a great book list for kids from babies to teens.

Strategies for Successful Homeschooling

Greta shares a variety of practical tips for successful homeschooling. These tips come from her own experience as a homeschooled student, her early years as a novice homeschool mom, to her current position as a happy homeschooling mom of 10 years. This talk will be an encouragement to the new and veteran homeschool mom alike.

Parenting the Passionate Child

So often, parents of passionate children feel alone in their parenting journey. It can be very lonely when you are struggling with your child.  You wonder what you are doing wrong, or what’s wrong with your child, if you are the only parent who has ever struggled to like their kid, and if you are a terrible parent. It’s hard! In this talk Greta encourages every parent of passionate

children and tells them they are not alone.  She shares real honest parts of her own journey parenting two very passionate children, and all the positive things God has brought about in their lives and my own through the journey. Greta also offers practical tips to help you help your passionate child grow and blossom. Her goal in this talk is not to tell parents how to fix their children, but rather to see the gift that passion is to our children and how it can be used for good.

 

Homeschooling in Times of Doubt

Greta shares some personal stories from her own journey as a homeschool mom of a child who has dyslexia and has struggled to learn to read. Greta also addresses the role of marriage in homeschooling and shares what things have seen her through when she was full of doubts about homeschooling successfully.

children and tells them they are not alone.  She shares real honest parts of her own journey parenting two very passionate children, and all the positive things God has brought about in their lives and my own through the journey. Greta also offers practical tips to help you help your passionate child grow and blossom. Her goal in this talk is not to tell parents how to fix their children, but rather to see the gift that passion is to our children and how it can be used for good.

 

Caleb Schroeder

Caleb Schroeder is a K-12 homeschool graduate and public educator. He is the third of nine homeschooled children. He is a homeschool dad with six kids ranging in age from 7 to 17 years old. He taught math for 18 years in a public high school in southern California, and he holds a Master’s Degree in Curriculum and Instruction in Mathematics from the University of Texas at Arlington. He has taught Mathematics for six years as an adjunct professor at his local community college. Holding a Master’s Degree in Biblical Studies from the Master’s University, he transitioned from public schools to full-time ministry as the Senior Pastor at Faith Community Church Palmdale in Southern California in 2020. Caleb has a passion for homeschooling that is informed by an inside view of the broken public education system. As an educator, homeschool graduate, and homeschool parent he believes that God has uniquely positioned him to aid the parents who are exiting public education in droves. He believes that every parent can homeschool, and he sees homeschoolers as the leaders of tomorrow. He participated in the online Homegrown Generation Conference as a panelist. He also participated in the documentary Schoolhouse Rocked, and he has appeared on the Schoolhouse Rocked podcast.

Affordable Homeschooling

Homeschooling on a single income in Southern California. There are sacrifices that need to be made when living on a single income in a state where the cost of living is so high. But the benefits far outweigh the costs. This practical seminar will focus on some of the ins and outs of supporting a family of eight on a single income.

The Joshua Generation

Mistakes and successes from the last generation. This session will address how to raise children that change culture rather than flee from it.

Homeschool Fatigue

How do you keep going when it seems like you are going nowhere? This seminar will talk about maintaining endurance through all the various stages of child development from infant to teen. This session will emphasize both practical and spiritual implications.

Homeschooling for a Stronger Marriage

Oftentimes homeschool parents put their marriage on the back burner due to the hectic life of a homeschool family. This session will focus on why a healthy marriage is the most important element of an effective education. It will offer practical advice on how to maintain a healthy marriage in the midst of the organized chaos of homeschooling.

Homeschooling is Discipleship

How is each dad uniquely equipped as the spiritual leader of his family? What are the unique roles that God has given parents to fulfill as they bring up children “in the way they should go?” How does this work for single parents? Practical advice for discipling children at all stages will be given. This seminar will seek to answer the question: “how can I disciple my children when I don’t have a Bible degree?”

Integrating Dad into Homeschool

This session will explicate the essential roles that dads can play in homeschooling. It will focus on the essential diversity that two parents working together can bring to their child’s education. It will encourage dads to take part and not sit back. It will offer practical advice for how a dad can insert himself effectively into the homeschool environment.

Homeschooling in Cancel Culture

How to use homeschooling to prepare your children for a culture that wants to cancel them. In a world where deconstruction is the norm, how do we construct a model of discipleship that helps our children not make a shipwreck of their faith? Our children will face a tidal wave of opposition to their Christian worldview, how do we prepare them to stand in the gap unwavering in their faith.

Janelle Knutson

Janelle is wife to one amazing husband and mom to seven wonderful children. She enjoys encouraging homeschool moms with practical tips and biblical truth. Her greatest joy is found in Christ and she hopes to share that joy with fellow homeschool moms through her speaking engagements, podcast, blog and YouTube channel. You can find her at JanelleKnutson.com.

Getting Started in Homeschooling

This workshop takes attendees step-by-step through the process of getting started in homeschooling. From visiting HSLDA and the attendee’s state homeschool organization website for information on how to homeschool legally, to finding a support group, picking curriculum and setting up a home for homeschooling, this workshop covers it all!

Homeschooling Multiple Grades Without Losing Your Mind

Homeschooling one child can be a challenge but throw in multiple children and things can get crazy. If you are overwhelmed with homeschooling several children then come find encouragement and practical tips in this workshop. Janelle Knutson, veteran homeschool mom of seven children, will share how to homeschool multiple grades without losing your mind.

Organizing Your Homeschool

If you are looking for ideas on how to organize your homeschool then this workshop is for you. I will be sharing numerous ideas for lesson planning, organizing your student’s work and grades, creating ways for your child to work independently and setting up your homeschool. There are plenty of ideas to choose from. Pick the ones that work best for you and your family.

Homeschooling the Preschooler

Are you trying to decide what to do with your child during the preschool years? This workshop will cover the benefits of keeping your preschooler at home, things to think about before purchasing preschool curriculum, what your child really needs to learn during the preschool years and ideas for learning through play and life experiences.

Aby Rinella

Aby Rinella is a former public-school teacher turned passionate homeschool mom. Aby is an Idaho native who lives in the mountains with her college sweetheart and 3 awesome kids where they enjoy all things outdoors. Aby is a writer and speaker, seeking to encourage and inspire women to live the life they were designed to live, to train up their children in God’s Word, and to stand on truth in a culture that has lost its foundation. Aby and her husband, Jesse, are passionate about encouraging men and women to prioritize the calling they have been given to raise their families the way they were designed. They also write for outdoor/hunting publications with a focus on family in the field and the benefits of pointing children to their Creator through spending time outside, in His creation. Jesse and Aby are the former directors of their local homeschool support group, and board members of Homeschool Idaho. Aby also co-hosts the Schoolhouse Rocked podcast, as well as writes for publications in both the homeschool community and the outdoor industry.  The Rinella family runs a non-profit organization, Called Beyond, that takes families and children impacted by disability, terminal illness or various obstacles on hunting, fishing, and other outdoor adventures. You can find them at  https://calledtothetop.com/ and https://www.thecallbeyond.org/

Finding Your Why

 Why Homeschool?   This is a question we are asked regularly; a question we must even ask ourselves. In a culture that has abandoned truth, it is more important than ever that we build our homeschool ‘why’ on a solid foundation that will not give way as the storms come. The right ‘why’ is what will keep us rooted and grounded on hard days, thwarting off the doubts that come. It is what will stop the naysayers in their tracks and encourage those that are looking for answers.  Join Aby as she discusses the heart of homeschool and the greatest ‘why’ of all. Have your passion for His calling lit on fire! This session is for all homeschool parents; the new homeschool mom that is just now discovering her why as well as the mom that has been doing it so long, she may have lost her ‘why’ along the way.

Motherhood: Ministry in the Mundane

Lesson plans, diaper changes, times tables, and dinner…again! Do you ever catch yourself, during the mundane days of motherhood, dreaming of more? Do you feel like the daily demands of mom-life takes a super-human strength that you just aren’t sure you have? Do you feel ‘less than’ as you look around at all the super-moms out there? Do you ever dream of trading in your apron for a cape and doing bigger things in this world? Then this session is for you! You are guaranteed to walk away encouraged, changed, and ready to embrace your calling like never before.

Am I Planning God Out of My Homeschool?

Do you love to plan? Do you like organizers, rows, columns and checklists? Do you love to label and color code everything into neat little boxes? Planning is essential to what we do; it helps our days and years run smoothly; but could it be that some of us become bound and chained to our ideas and plans? Is it possible that we are planning God right out of our homeschool? Come and hear how we can put God back in the driver seat of our home and school and how to use planning to help us rather than control us.

 

Conversation Café: Support Group Leaders

This conversational workshop is being moderated by Aby Rinella. Please come prepared to share about what’s working in your support group. Likewise, be prepared to ask questions about issues that your group is struggling with. Iron sharpens iron!

Teresa Foltin

Teresa Foltin has a Bachelor’s in English Literature and a Master’s in Student Affairs in Higher Education. Previously the Director of Student Activities at an American university in Germany, she is now a homeschooling mom of five. Her first two sons were adopted from Kazakhstan when they were 8 months and almost 2 years of age. Although she and her husband Martin only planned on adopting one child, they came home with two. A year later, their daughter was born on the older son’s third birthday. Needless to say, it was a good and crazy time in their life. Two more boys joined the family over the next six years. The oldest three have now graduated and she is still in the trenches teaching one middle schooler and one high schooler. Teresa travels across the US talking to parents and teachers, calming, encouraging, and exciting them about math education. She is interested in adoption, travel, horses, gardening, and reading. The Foltin family lives in Colorado on a small homestead with a menagerie of critters.

Building a Solid Math Foundation

Who is going to build a house by starting with the walls? Without a solid foundation, those walls may hold up for a bit but eventually will come crashing down. Math is a lot like building a house.  We need to start with a strong foundation and build up from there. It doesn’t have to be hard!  Come and see how easy it is to teach math.

You CAN Be a Great Math Teacher

Maybe you struggled with math, so how do you choose a curriculum to avoid the same fate for your child? Maybe you are really good at math but are unsure how to teach it now? Should you include manipulatives or not? What DOES it take to be the best teacher for your child? Find out the science and the art of teaching math. It is a science because

much research has been done on how children learn, especially in math. It

is an art because each child is different and lessons need to be tweaked. Come

learn and be encouraged to become a great math teacher.

 

Linda Patchin

Linda homeschooled her four children from birth through high school. She is a founding and current board member of Homeschool Idaho and is a regular columnist for the Homeschool Idaho Magazine. She wrote the book, The Politics of Pie: A History of Idaho Homeschooling, which tells the incredible story of how Idaho went from jailing homeschool parents to the freest state in the union. Linda loves to offer encouragement to homeschool parents! She lives in Boise with her husband, Paul. They have been blessed with 5 grandchildren. 

Curriculum, Transcripts, Diplomas… OH MY!

If you have ever wondered how to design a high school course of study, evaluate the results, develop a transcript or award a diploma, then this is the workshop for you! Linda will cover all of these subjects and more in one quick hour.

Nita Desrosier

Nita began homeschooling her five children in 2001. She recently “graduated” May 2022 when her last son crossed the finish line. During the journey, she and her husband Mark weathered the burial of their youngest child, numerous health challenges, long periods of work separation, the diagnosis and treatment of several children with learning glitches, and various other trials by which the love and support of the homeschool community strengthened their resolve to press on.

 

Conversation Café: Special Needs Resources

This breakout session is targeted to the large number of families who are educating students at home with unique emotional, academic and/or physical challenges. The objective of this session is to cull the valuable supports and resources which have been discovered in Idaho by our highly resourceful home educator community. Facilitated by Nita Desrosiers.

Audra Talley

Audra, a homeschool graduate herself, is currently homeschooling her 4th, 6th, and 8th graders. She is actively involved in various homeschool groups in the Treasure Valley (currently teaching highschool creative writing and elementary science). She is passionate about encouraging homeschool moms along their homeschool journey, both in person and through her articles for Homeschool Idaho’s quarterly magazine. She and her husband of 17 years, Bruce, live in rural Nampa.

Conversation Cafe: Homeschool Q & A

This conversational workshop is being moderated by Homeschool Idaho board member Audra Talley. Please come prepared with questions about homeschooling. Audra will do her best to answer them, and will also ask her audience to give their feedback on questions as well.

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