Meet our amazing team! We are a passionate and experienced group of educators with one mission: to support homeschooling families from around the globe. Each teacher on our team not only has professional teaching credentials and extensive virtual teaching experience, but also brings a unique perspective and a deep connection to the homeschool community. We've got your back!
Founder & Head of Operations
Meet Katrina, the Founder and Head of Operations at Spark Learning Pals. She's a busy mom of two boys and a passionate educator with over 10 years of experience in the public school system. But Katrina had a dream - to provide homeschool families worldwide with a unique, collaborative, and affordable program. So, she founded Spark Learning Pals to make it a reality.
Katrina's wealth of knowledge in curriculum development, instructional design, and e-learning practices has helped her achieve that dream. She believes in the power of connection and building a strong rapport with every student. With a Bachelor's degree in Inclusive Education from Nazareth College of Rochester and a Master's degree in Curriculum and Instruction with a concentration in Special Education, Katrina's approach to education is nothing less than unique, individualized, and inspirational.
Virtual Elementary & Secondary Teacher
Michaela has been teaching for four years now. Michaela graduated from Gardner-Webb University in North Carolina with her Bachelors of Science in Elementary Education. Michaela absolutely loves teaching!
She has wanted to be a teacher since she was in 3rd grade. Michaela has been teaching for four years now. Two of those years she taught virtually in public schools. Michaela recently got married in 2021 and just had her first baby in March of 2022! She has a wonderful husband (whom is also an educator) and two beautiful boys. Michaela lives in a small town called Franklinton, North Carolina.
Michaela loves all things Dr. Seuss. Her favorite season is Fall and her favorite holiday is Christmas. In her spare time, she likes to put together puzzles and complete DIY projects. Michaela is currently teaching from home so that she will be able to care for her little baby. In her free time she also enjoys hiking and going to the beach.
Michaela is super excited to be part of the Spark Learning Pal Team and work with your children!
Virtual Elementary & Secondary Teacher
Michele has a Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education (grades K-6), with an ESOL endorsement. Michele has been teaching for 13 years. Michele has experience teaching in a variety of different charter schools, as well as many years of virtual teaching experience.
She loves teaching Math, Science, and Social Studies. Michele strives to create highly engaging and interactive lessons to keep learning exciting.
Michele is very excited to join the Spark Learning Pal Team and is here to help your child grow.
Virtual Voice & Piano Teacher
Since 2002 Ms. Canda has performed and recorded professionally and has enjoyed teaching voice and piano to children and adults for over 18 years.
Originally from MD, she received a Bachelor's degree in Music at George Washington University and Master's Degree in Vocal Performance at Catholic University of America in Washington DC.
Ms. Canda enjoys empowering students to develop self-esteem, confidence, and discipline through music as they set goals for themselves. She motivates and embraces each student’s originality as growing musicians and performers while helping them create, progress and have fun!
Bilingual Virtual Teacher
Renata comes to Spark Learning Pals with over 15 years of teaching experience. Renata has direct experience with in-person learning, as well as several years of teaching students from all over the world in a virtual classroom setting. Renata obtained her Bachelor's Degree in Elementary School Education from Guadalajara, Mexico.
Renata is a mother to twins, who enjoys spending any free time she has with her children. Renata is extremely outgoing, confident, and loves working with children of all ages. When Renata isn't working as a Bilingual Virtual Teacher, you can find her baking, spending time with children, and socializing with family and friends.
Renata will be be leading the foreign language classes for all of our students, in addition to unique elective classes.
Renata is eager to join the Spark Learning Pal team and support each child's homeschool journey.
Virtual Teacher & Customer Support Team Specialist
Chelsea has been working in the educational field for nine years, growing up she worked at local daycares as well as volunteering her time to help whenever it was needed.
Then after graduation Chelsea attended Keuka College majoring in Education and American Sign Language before transferring to Post University where she obtained her degree in Early Childhood.
Chelsea is currently homeschooling her three boys, while keeping the household running smoothly. Chelsea knows the importance of education, but most importantly the strong understanding of teacher/student connection.
In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her husband of 12 years and their three boys, taking them to the family farm to visit and spend time with their loved ones.
It is her greatest understanding that every child is different and we must dive deep to fully engage in a positive learning environment.
Chelsea is extremely excited to begin this adventure with Spark Learning Pals entire team, staff and families while continuing to homeschool her children and help families just like hers.
Lead Virtual Elementary & Secondary Teacher
Since she was a young child, Christy knew that teaching was her calling.
She pursued this dream by graduating from the University of Tennessee with her Bachelor of Science degrees in Early Childhood and Elementary Education. She also holds an ESL certification. She went on teach in public schools for 22 years before coming home to homeschool her own children. She has homeschooled her own two daughters, who are in 4th and 9th grades, for the past 8 years. For the past 5 years, Christy has taught children from around the world online.
Christy is passionate about teaching and learning. She strives to make her lessons engaging, memorable, and FUN! She loves building rapport with her students and their families to let them know she is invested in their success.
In her free time, Christy enjoys spending time with her husband of 28 years, her children, and their pets. She has two fur babies--a white bunny named Snowflake and a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel named Charlee Darling. Christy enjoys traveling, watching movies, reading, taking walks, and cross-stitching. During the pandemic, she taught many fun online classes for her daughters and their friends. For Christy, being a teacher is not just what she does, it is who she is. She is excited to bring her passion and enthusiasm to Spark Learning.
Gia has two years of experience as a Reading Specialist using the Orton-Gillingham approach.
Born in Brazil and from a family of Educators, she always loved to learn and believes in the importance of trust between learners and educators. With over eight years of teaching experience and five years of experience working with Special Education, she is passionate about teaching with creativity and patience.
Miss Gia is a teacher certified by the Orton-Gillingham Academy and is currently pursuing a dual bachelor's degree in Elementary Education and Special Education. She believes the Orton-Gillingham approach is a fantastic resource for any struggling readers!
Miss Gia is so happy to be a part of Spark Learning Pals and can’t wait to build a meaningful connection with her learners while supporting each family in their homeschool journey.
Health & Nutrition Virtual Teacher
Dr. Nikki is a busy boy mom and health and fitness enthusiast with a wealth of knowledge within the field of health, nutrition, and science.
Nikki was born in Illinois but raised in Nebraska . She completed her Bachelor's Degree at University of Nebraska Omaha, went on to receive a Master’s Degree in Counseling from Bellevue University, then received her Doctor of Naturopathy Degree from the United States School of Naturopathy.
Dr. Nikki has over 10 years of experience in the health and wellness field and has done everything from teaching group fitness classes to providing personal training services as well as nutrition coaching. Nikki is dedicated to helping others enhance their lives by adopting healthy habits and making fitness a part of their lifestyle.
Nikki is also a professor at Midland University where she teaches Sports Nutrition, Health and Wellness, and Assessment of Human Performance. She loves working with student athletes to improve their performance, enhance their skills, and develop strategies to achieve and maintain a health-enhancing level of fitness.
Virtual Music Teacher
Miss Kaylee is excited to join Spark Learning Pals as our newest Music Teacher. Kaylee is so excited to meet all of her new students.
She has been involved and studying music since she was extremely young, one can say she was only 4-5 years old when she developed a strong connection and true passion for music. Kaylee was quickly drawn to music and if anything involved music she wanted to learn it.
Miss Kaylee studied Music Education in college and worked with many mentors on how to best approach music education and create a unique approach to learning music.
Miss Kaylee loves to sing, play almost every instrument you could think of, and enjoys musical theater.
She is extremely excited to share her love of music with all of her new students, and the amazing wonders that is music and how it all works!
Virtual Teacher & Customer Support Team Lead
Sheree is so excited to be part of the Spark Learning Pal family. Sheree is a homeschool mom of a 7 year old daughter and a wife of 11 years.
She studied at the State University of NY in Farmingdale. Prior to joining the Spark Learning Pals Team Sheree worked in a preschool setting, at a special needs care center, and as a substitute teacher. Sheree thoroughly enjoy teaching and building a bond with her students. Homeschooling has been an exciting journey for her daughter and she loves being able to spend that extra time with her family that it allows. It is Sheree's goal to make lessons fun, engaging and inspiring to children.
Sheree and her family love traveling- (especially going to beach), hiking, biking, fishing, cooking and going to the movies. They love spending time together in anyway they can.
Sheree looks forward to meeting all of the Spark Learning Pal children and their lovely families. Sheree is excited to grow with the Spark Learning Pal Team and be a part of their homeschool journey!
Virtual Elementary Teacher
Irisa has a Master’s Degree in Education and she’s been teaching virtually and in a brick & mortar school for many years. She is so excited to get to know her students!
Irisa has been a virtual teacher for four years. She likes creating fun and engaging virtual lessons for her students. Before she became a virtual teacher, Irisa worked as a teacher and tutor all over New York City.
Irisa grew up in New York where she studied education at Hunter College. She has a Master of Science in Special Education. Irisa strongly believes that every student can learn. She is committed to supporting young learners on their educational journeys.
Irisa lives in Connecticut with her family, turtle, and dog. When she is not in the classroom, you can find Irisa hiking in the woods or bird watching.
Virtual Math Teacher
Matt has experience helping students with math for the last 15 years.
Matt considers himself both a student and a teacher for life! He attended the University of Michigan for his undergraduate degree and then the University of Phoenix for his Master's Degree in Math Education.
Matt has worked as a private tutor, public school teacher to both junior and senior high students, a college instructor for local community colleges, and a professor on the university level. In fact, he still teaches for his Alma Mater at the University of Michigan.
Matt has been teaching online since 2018, and has been homeschooling his daughter for about three years now.
Matt recently moved to a new state where he is getting connected with local clubs and organizations for things his family enjoys such as, Pokemon, homeschool clubs and groups, and the faith-based community.
Matt and his family volunteer, and prioritize having fun with one another! He enjoys bike-riding, playing board games, swimming, and hiking.
Matt is very excited to bring his expertise in the field of mathematics to support homeschool families around the world.