Meet our Contributors

January 27, 2022 | Wisdom Wonder Project

Interested in meeting the educators behind the Wisdom Wonder Project curriculum? Keep scrolling to learn a bit about our team.

Singapore Math Video Teachers

Amy Houser (Kindergarten and First Grade)

If she’s not exploring the oceanfront and observing what the tide brings in, Amy is probably homeschooling her three children, or, of course, in her classroom. A graduate from Hope International University and a teacher for seventeen years, Amy is dedicated to helping others embrace the developmental process of their children.

Lisa Ann Dillon (Second and Third Grade)

A teacher for over twenty-five years, Lisa Ann dreams about seeing a world where math literacy is as important as reading literacy. “Beyond that,” she says, “Math is intrinsically beautiful, and all children deserve to have it presented to them in that way.” With her BFA from Webster University and teaching credential & master’s coursework from Pacific Oaks College, Lisa Ann is still actively presenting the beauty of math and other subjects to her students and her own two children on the central coast of California, where she also spends lots of time in her garden wondering at the bees, butterflies, and birds of all kinds.

Young Scholars Curriculum

Jennifer Perneel (History & Literature and Science)

Jenn has been teaching first and second graders for eighteen years, and she has been with SLO Classical Academy since 2006, almost from the beginning. She holds a B.S. in Child Development as well as a Multiple Subject Teaching Credential, and has also taught summer camps and other extracurriculars in addition to hybrid-homeschooling her own two children. She’s a lifelong reader, loves mentoring and supporting others, and is constantly astounded by her own children and her students. “I have the luxury,” she says, “Of being surrounded by the best wonderers.”

Emma Saperstein (Young Masters Art)

Among a variety of curatorial and arts management positions throughout her career, Emma has curated for Cuesta College’s Harold J. Miossi Art Gallery and an international art group called Shared_Studios. Her internationally-based childhood fostered her wonder about the infinite patterns in the world and nature, while her education at Wheaton College and the New York Center for Art and Media Studies made her passionate about contemporary art. “For me,” she says, “the arts gave me a language and way of expression I did not know I needed.”

Little Wonders Curriculum

Meredith Eades (Block Play and Little Masters Art)

Merideth is one of the founders of San Luis Obispo Classical Academy’s Little Wonders, the first classical preschool in the San Luis Obispo area. Holding a B.A. in Human Development from California Polytechnic State University, she’s been working with SLOCA since 2007. Before that, she worked one on one teaching children how to read. She dreams of writing her own children’s book one day but, for now, is content to be opened to wonder every day by the wonder-full children around her. “It isn’t complicated,” she says. “Just look around with the expectation that you will be wowed.”

Jessica Wilson (Literature and Little Masters Art)

Jessica is a passionate purveyor of beautiful picture books and a believer in the power of every story. She has eight-plus years of professional preschool teaching experience under her belt. In addition, she’s taught art classes, led storytimes at several bookstores, written children’s book reviews, and created DIY tutorials. When not busy with all that, she spends her days planning the next big road trip, watching the birds in her garden, and wondering about what stories other people have stuck in their heads.

Mary Knudson (Literature)

In addition to homeschooling her own four children, Mary has been teaching kindergarten for over ten years. After graduating from Sonoma State University with a BA in Communications, she went on to earn her teaching credential from California Polytechnic State University and then found her home at SLO Classical Academy for a season, during which time she authored the Kindergarten Literature Collection based on her experiences both in the classroom and homeschooling her children. When asked what makes her wonder, she says, “I’m always in a state of wonder about one thing or another.”

Stacey Coté (Literature and Nature Play)

A Jr. Kindergarten teacher and homeschooling mama, Stacey is also an artist and avid nature journaler. She holds a teaching credential and liberal studies degree from California Polytechnic State University. Stacey says children—with their curious minds, eager questions and playful spirits—have always made her wonder most. She is passionate about preserving a natural heart for exploration and investigation through nature play in her children and students.

Julie Larsen (Literature)

Julie has been teaching for an impressive twenty-two-plus years. Though she has a BA in Elementary Education, she’s taught everything from preschool to junior high. But, she says, teaching Jr. Kindergarten at SLO Classical Academy was a highlight of her career. As she puts it, “Four-and five-year-olds wonder naturally and continually.” She’s passionate about bringing literature to life, but also finds wonder in her wanderings about the garden and in nature. She says, “The wonderings are infinite!”