Katie has a B.A. in anthropology from the University of Pennsylvania. She is ardent about the importance of self-directed learning experiences and works to make such experiences as accessible as possible. She has worked in alternative learning environments such as the Albany Free School and Open Connections.
Katie founded Talking Stick Learning Center in 2006 and now serves as Founder, Co-Director, and Lead Facilitator. Katie leads the Day Program. Katie is also responsible for all staff training as well as the development of the vision, mission, and philosophy of Talking Stick.
Angie received a B.S.E. in Civil Engineering Systems from the University of Pennsylvania and her J.D. from the University of Washington, and is a member of the Pennsylvania Bar. A mother of four with a private law practice, she has been homeschooling for 13 years. She is passionate about alternative education and is committed to facilitating learning through real experiences and interactions.
Angie coordinates much of the administrative and back-office tasks. She is a trained Talking Stick Facilitator, leads several Intermediate and Teen Programs, facilitates the Day Program, and also monitors many of the supplemental programs.
Melissa has a M.Ed. from Temple University, and PA certifications in Elementary, Special, and Reading Specialist Education. Melissa taught in a public progressive elementary school for 7 years before having her 3 children. She created and directed a performing arts summer camp for 10 years in Philadelphia, where she worked with children ages 7-17 in building original works of theater, dance and music.
Melissa and her musical family of 5 made their transition from traditional schooling to self-directed learning when they embarked on a year-long adventure through Southeast Asia, instruments in tow and eyes wide open. Since then, she has been on a never-ending journey to understand and respect foreign cultures through worldschooling, and also to understand and respect herself, her family, and her community through homeschooling. Melissa thinks that sharing her passions for adventure, the performing arts, and education with young people is an incredible way to live and learn. Melissa will be a trained Talking Stick Facilitator leading several Intermediate Programs.
Lisa earned a B.A. in psychology and environmental science from the University of Notre Dame, along with minors in German and science, technology, and values. From a young age, Lisa always said she wanted to be a teacher when she grew up, but didn't imagine all the ways that would take shape in her life. Family and career transitions brought Lisa, her husband, and their three daughters to North Carolina and later, in 2014, to Philadelphia. They are a family of eclectic life learners who particularly enjoy science, books, music, food and road trips.
Lisa's work experience includes time as a teacher in Southeast DC as well as several years at a nationally-ranked science center, COSI, in Ohio. There she worked as a mentor for teen volunteers, many of them homeschoolers, before moving into exhibit and program development and acting as a producer for the permanent exhibition, Gadgets. Lisa is a trained Talking Stick Facilitator leading several Intermediate Programs.
Amy has a B.A. in history with an emphasis on alternative education from Vermont College. Amy is certified in Elementary Education by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and also has certification in the Teacher Education Program by the National Coalition of Alternative Community Schools.
Amy has been in the teaching field for the past 27 years. She taught in California, Arizona and in PA at Upattinas School and Community Center. For the past 10 years Amy has been homeschooling her two daughters and teaching at 3 different homeschool co-ops ages 2-18. Amy is an advocate for self-directed interest driven learning. She believes in non-coercive education and has experience with democratic community schools. Amy will be a trained Talking Stick Facilitator leading several Intermediate Programs.
Andy received a B.S. in early childhood and elementary education from Temple University and her M.Ed. in computers and technology from Arcadia University. She was employed as a kindergarten teacher with the School District of Philadelphia for ten years before the birth of her first child.
Andy is continuing her plans with her husband to live life unconventionally while unschooling their three children, supporting organic and local products, crafting, gardening, listening to great diverse music, and coexisting in this life-long learning process. Andy is a trained Talking Stick Facilitator for our Day Program.
Heather earned a B.A. in women's studies, with a minor in game design, from Goddard College, and she is also a trained sexuality educator. Heather practices instructional and experiential design in the tradition of progressive education, incorporating best practice research on theories of play, self-direction, nature (outdoors), games, collaboration, democracy, and, neuroscience. She is an advocate for LGBT youth and for teen rights and health. She is a certified facilitator of Our Whole Lives: Sexuality Education.
Always up for new challenges, Heather has worked as a sports writer, website producer, game developer, and instructional designer, as well owning a bookstore in Southern California Heather, her husband, and homeschooled teen daughter have made Philadelphia their home and joined the Talking Stick Learning Center community in 2011. Heather is a Trained Talking Stick Facilitator and leads our Teen Programs.
Adrian received a B.A. in English with an emphasis on creative writing, as well as a minor in history, from La Salle University; after college, he served as an officer in the United States Army. A homeschooling father of four, web designer, writer, and feminist, Adrian is passionate about open source technology, alternate economies, protecting the freedom to create, social justice, and finding time to get lost in the woods now and then.
Adrian owns a web design business, is an Eagle Scout who volunteers in leadership positions with the Boy Scouts of America, manages the Talking Stick website, and is a trained Talking Stick Facilitator leading some of our Teen Programs.
Asha earned her B.F.A. in theatrical design from Penn State University and traveled extensively throughout Europe, Asia, and South America, designing dance productions and learning in a very non-tourist way how others live and learn.
Asha has been involved in alternative education most of her life-- first unschooling herself, then moving to Pennsylvania to unschool her young people. She practices urban homesteading in a 234-year-old crooked house filled with way too many books. Asha is a trained Talking Stick Facilitator for our Day and Intermediate Programs.
Su has been eclectically home schooling with her 3 girls for over a decade now, and holds PA Teaching Certifications in ELED, SPED and Middle Years English and Social Studies. Prior to teaching Su worked as an RN.
Su holds a deep belief that the natural world is the best classroom, and in the joy and growth that happens organically when we all find and follow our own inner compass. Su enjoys spending as much time as possible with her wild and wonderful girls, her backyard chickens and a very special flock of 4-H sheep. Su is a trained Talking Stick Facilitator leading several Intermediate Programs.
Alia received a B.A. in psychology from Rosemont College and became a Registered Nurse after graduating from Roxborough School of Nursing. Before homeschooling her three children for the last 13 years, she managed multiple alternative education programs in the greater Philadelphia area.
Alia is a Trained Talking Stick Facilitator and facilitates the Day Program as well as the Intermediate and Teen Program.