Friday Faces | LMS Teachers - SLO Classical Academy
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San Luis Obispo Classical Academy San Luis Obispo Classical Academy

Welcome to Down Home, San Luis Obispo Classical Academy’s blog! We are a classical school offering several options to make our education work for families with infants through high schoolers. Our signature hybrid program, which is part-time classroom and part-time home instruction, provides an engaging education for preschool through middle school (with full time options available). We also have a university model high school. This blog is meant to support and encourage on the home front because, in so many ways, the heart of what happens at SLO Classical Academy happens down home.

Semper discentes—always learning together.
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Friday Faces | LMS Teachers

It’s time for LMS teachers to get a shout out in this installment of our Friday Faces blog series. We feature our Lower Middle School teachers, and trust us- you’ll love to know more about them!

What page-turners did you read over the summer?

Mrs. Côté: A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, Pride and Prejudice, The Exiles, The Last Bookshop in London, Finished Enola Holmes book series, The Midnight Library, How to Stop Time, The Elements of Teaching, and Middle Ages: A Brief History

Mrs. Rey: I read The Elements of Teaching, Rewiring Education, The Road to Character, The Four Winds, and The Rose Code

Ms. Espino: The Death and Life of the Great American School System: How Testing and Choice Are Undermining Education By: Diane Ravitch

Mrs. Gerhardt: This is taxing my memory! SLOCA reads: Breaking Bread with the Dead, The Shallows, The Elements of Teaching. For my personal enjoyment and edification: Dante’s Divine Comedy (only finished Inferno so far), Greenmantle, a mystery by John Buchan (a favorite author), Knowing God by J. I. Packer, Quo Vadis by Sienkiewicz. With my little grandchildren, we read Stuart Little, Trumpet of the Swan and many, many wonderful picture books.

Mrs. Martinez: Born a Crime by Trevor Noah

How long has SLOCA been lucky to have you? What attracted you to SLOCA in the first place?

Mrs. Côté: Our family has been at SLOCA 8 years and this is my fourth year in the classroom. We were attracted to SLOCA both from tutoring a former student and when looking for the right fit for our kindergartener. The hybrid program was the biggest pull for us to choose SLOCA but the program in its entirety has kept us here.

Mrs. Rey: I’ve been at SLOCA for 17 years. I enrolled my third grade son (Mitchell Rey) the first year SLOCA opened. I was homeschooling my sons classically at the time and wanted more support, guidance, and wisdom from others. I really wanted to journey with a community and SLOCA opened its doors at the perfect time.

Ms. Espino: This is my 2nd year at SLOCA. I was drawn here after my cousin had an amazing schooling experience!

Mrs. Gerhardt: I believe this is year 12 for me! I had known about SLOCA during my homeschooling years. After my youngest son graduated from high school, Lisa Wallace told me of an opening at SLOCA for the study lab; I thought I would give it a try. The next year Sarah Weinschenk asked me to teach Latin, and the rest is history! I love my students, my colleagues, and classical education…with a twist.

Ms. Martinez: This is my second year at SLOCA and first as FTP LMS Learning Leader. I was intrigued by the small class size and sense of community here.

What are you looking forward to teaching or learning with your students this year, as related to the Middle Ages?

Mrs. Côté: I can’t wait for Robin Hood!! It is a family favorite and I know we will have fun with it in the classroom this year.

Mrs. Rey: It’s really hard to pick one person or event so I would say that I really love engaging in mock trials with our LMS students. We choose a historical figure and based upon what we know and have learned decide whether we think the person is a hero or a villain. The students always come up with such thought-provoking ideas and reasons as to why they believe what they do. We will have some fun with a CSI investigation about Marco Polo that will be similar to our mock trials that I am really looking forward to.

Ms. Espino: I am excited to teach my students about the intriguing lives of Vikings! The Viking lifestyle is very fascinating to me and I think my students will love learning about them.

Mrs. Gerhardt: The beautiful intersection of language expressed in the written word. The painstaking illuminated manuscripts in Latin are true expressions of beauty. I have some Latin phrases for the students to translate taken from Medieval documents.

Ms. Martinez: I’m looking forward to learning more about feudalism and seeing how it relates to the neo-feudalism of our current world, in hopes of imagining a brighter future alongside students.

If you decided to share a recent favorite photo, please describe what is special to you about it!

Mrs. Côté: Our family at my sister-in-law’s wedding this summer!

Mrs. Rey: My ultimate happy place is with these six incredible humans (my husband, my three sons, my daughter-in-love, and my granddaughter). I love my days with them.

Ms. Espino: This summer I spent 3 weeks in Italy and got to see many of the places we learned about last year such as the Roman colosseum. I also got to travel to Florence (where I lived for a few months in 2019) and Palermo, Sicily where my great-grandparents were born.

Mrs. Gerhardt: I had to send two photos…One highlight of our summer is Nana and Papa Camp. The kids love to explore in the Salinas River behind our property. The other photo is the newest blessing of our clan born in August: Wylie Gerhardt.

Ms. Martinez: This summer, my younger brother was married in Harmony, CA. In the picture is my brother Noah, sister-in-law Aly, sister Sarah, mother Diane, and father Paul. It was a day of joy and celebration, one I’ll never forget.

Photo from Ms. Martinez

See what me mean when we say SLOCA is lucky to have such well-rounded, well-travelled and just plain fun teachers! Our Lower Middle School teachers really embody Classical Education with a Twist here at SLOCA.

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