Elementary School Mentors

Heidi PopeHeidi Pope

2022-2023 Mentor: Opal Unit Studies Live and Self-Paced

Heidi has been homeschooling for 25 years.  She and her husband have five beautiful children, four of which are married with families of their own. Prior to her career in home and family life, she was the director of Human Resources for a Marketing and Political Research Firm. She has been a freelance writer and journalist for three decades and has received numerous accolades for her amusing apologues.

Heidi enjoys organizing community events and educational projects. She has enjoyed gathering community participation with programs such as an international language training and student exchange, historical battle re-enactments, emergency planning and preparation events and is currently the torchbearer for Bismarck Children of Christ Leadership Academy.  Heidi loves working with children, and youth and loves helping them make spiritual connections to the world around  them.

She has a predilection for creating team building opportunities and experiences for young people and families. She loves serving at the temple, spending time with her husband and homeschooling her youngest son. She enjoys creating funny memories, playing games with her family, kayaking, reading and playing with her grandchildren.

Lethe Cheney

2022-2023 Mentor: Voyagers and Trailblazers English Language Arts courses

I am a wife to an amazing husband and mother of 2 beautiful daughters who also attend Ensign Peak Academy.  My husband and I were both born and raised on the beautiful island of Oahu where we met in seminary, and reunited after his mission.  We were married in the Laie Hawaii temple and both graduated from BYU-Hawaii.  I have a dual degree in Elementary and Special Education and  taught as a Preschool Special Teacher for 8 years.  In 2011 my husband joined the U.S. Navy and we began our grand worldwide adventure!    We have been home educating for over a decade and have enjoyed making new friends around the country in Great Lakes, IL, San Diego, CA, Jacksonville, Florida and currently, Augusta, GA!  We also loved the 2 years we spent living abroad in Yokosuka, Japan!  Here in Georgia we enjoy our time living out in the country on 6 acres of rolling hills, taking care of our 11 chickens, 6 goats, and Cusco our alpaca.  There’s always a project in progress around here!  Family time is a priority for me and one of my favorite family memories is  the 2 week long road trip we took driving across the country visiting Utah, spending the 4th of July at Mount Rushmore, and visiting many of the historic sites at Nauvoo!  We recently began serving as ordinance workers in the Columbia South Carolina temple, which has brought greater growth and happiness to our lives.  My other joys include bicycling, snuggling up with a blanket and good book, watching Korean dramas, and getting up early in the morning to workout or do yoga.  My major aims in life are to help others stay positive, deepen their testimonies of Jesus Christ and his gospel, and help them strive to reach their potential!    

Alyssa Jensen

2022-2023 Mentor: Math Lab, Pioneers, Innovators, Discoverers and Explorers English Language Arts courses

Alyssa Jensen is first and foremost a wife and mother to five amazing children. The Jensen family has been homeschooling for the past seven years and have really enjoyed learning in a gospel centered setting. Alyssa graduated from Brigham Young University with a Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education. She has taught off and on in the public school setting as well as teaching English online. Alyssa has also developed and taught curriculum for a variety of homeschool classes and co-ops. 

Alyssa grew up in West Valley City, Utah where she met her very own knight in shining armor (sir lancer of Granger High school). Alyssa married her knight in 2001 and have moved their way across the country living in Arizona, New Mexico and the past decade in South Carolina. They now reside in League City, Texas. 

Alyssa has a passion for learning and loves to teach because she learns so much. She is often found serving with the youth and children in the church. Her favorite service was when she was able to teach early morning seminary. 

Alyssa is a certified personal trainer and behavior change specialist. She loves being active and pushing herself in the gym. One of her favorite things is to see the light of understanding illuminate in someone she is teaching.

Ben Muhlestein

2022-2023 Mentor: Self-Paced Unit Studies

  • Ancient Civilizations Unit Study 
  • Middle Ages Unit Study
  • US History: The Colonial Era Unit Study 
  • US History: The Founding Era Unit Study 
  • Astronomy Unit Study
  • The Animal Kingdom Unit Study
  • Biographies of Great Scientists Unit Study 
  • Biographies of Great Inventors Unit Study 
  • Biographies of American Founders Unit Study 
  • US Government and Citizenship Unit Study 
  • Common Forms of Government Unit Study

Madeline Hastings

2022-2023 Mentor: Music Appreciation Unit Study Mentor

My name is Madeline Hastings and I grew up in Nashville, TN and Houston, TX.  I am the second of five children and the only daughter.  I loved the opportunity I had to serve as a full-time missionary in the Utah, Ogden mission.  Currently, I am engaged to be married this October 2022 and look forward to this exciting next chapter of my life.  I am currently a student at Brigham Young University- Idaho pursuing a degree in choral music education hoping to teach high school choir once I graduate.  I have always had a strong love and passion for music, taking piano lessons and participating in choir from a young age.  I find great joy in sharing my love for music and the gospel through teaching and performing.  In addition to music, I also enjoy baking, reading, and spending time with my dog and family.

Marie Withers

2022-2023 Mentor: Art Appreciation Unit Study, Elementary Studio Art

Marie Withers is an artist and instructor. Her Education includes a Master of Arts (MA, 2019) in Art Education at Brigham Young University (BYU), a BFA Degree in Art Education from Utah State University (USU, 1988), and a BS Degree in Home Economics Education from the University of Idaho (UI, 1982). She teaches painting and drawing; and is also fluent in graphic design and photography.  From 1997 to 2017, she was a graphic designer and eventually a multi-media designer at BYU. Currently, she makes and sells fine art (mostly oil paintings) and prints, in galleries, shows and online. Her work is primarily with the landscape, but she has also created figure and portrait work. She taught high school art and home economics at South Fremont High School in Idaho for two years, prior to becoming a graphic designer.  During three different summers, she taught drawing and painting at Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp in Twin Lake, Michigan. In 1996 she had the opportunity of being an artist-in-residence for Fox Hollow Elementary School in Idaho Falls. Born in upstate New York, she spent most of her formative years in Moscow, Idaho, eventually making her way to Southeast Idaho and Utah. She now resides in Rexburg, Idaho.

Having had the opportunity of teaching early-morning Seminary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints one year,  she appreciates how art and Gospel beliefs are so intertwined. Some of her artwork depicts events in Church history. She is passionate about both art and teaching and finds great pleasure in helping students discover things about our world through art.

Laura Waite, Mentor at Ensign Peak Academylaura Waite

Language Arts Specialist, IXL Account Manager

Laura Waite grew up in California, earned an Associate Degree from Ricks College (Brigham Young University-Idaho), married a very handsome and talented man, and raised six children (all girls except five!) After 20 years, she went back to college at Grand Canyon University online and earned a Bachelor’s Degree in English Education. She has also earned endorsements in business and marketing and gifted and talented education.

Laura just moved to Richfield, Utah where she and her husband are planning to build a house. She has two granddaughters and one more on the way! She loves walking on the beach, hiking to waterfalls, and paddling her kayak. Her favorite activities include writing, traveling, reading, watching movies, and playing games with her family. One of her more ambitious goals is to visit all of the temples in the United States. She also loves to learn and teach and is excited to do it every day!