Elementary School Mentors

Heidi Pope

Heidi Pope

2023-2024 Mentor: Grade Emerald Unit Studies (5th – 6th Grade Live and 3rd – 6th Grade Self-Paced)

Heidi has been homeschooling for 26 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

2023-2024 Mentor: Pathfinders English Language Arts (live and self-paced) and Voyagers English Language Arts (self-paced), Teaching Textbooks Study Hall (3rd – 4th Grade)

I am a wife to an amazing husband and mother of two 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 two 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

2023-2024 Mentor: Teaching Textbooks Study Hall (5th – 6th Grade); Geography Unit Studies (self-paced), Teaching Your Children to Read Using the Book of Mormon

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.

Tara Kelley

2023-2024 Mentor: Discoverers English Language Arts (live and self-paced), Trailblazers English Language Arts (Self-Paced)

My name is Tara Kelley. I have been married to my wonderful husband, Jame, and we have five children  We live in Cody, Wyoming and we love to take as many adventures as we can. Our family enjoys hiking, mountain biking, fishing, swimming, camping, hunting, and playing together. My husband just started a new job as the Facilities Manager for the Cody Wyoming Temple for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. We are very excited for all of the new adventures that await us. In my spare time, I enjoy reading, going for walks, watching The Great British Baking Show, and going to my CrossFit class every morning. I was a public school teacher for the past seven years, but this year I have chosen to go on a new adventure of homeschooling three of my five children. I have taught 1st, 3rd, 5th, and 6th grade. I am a convert to the Gospel. I was baptized when I was 18 years old. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints had answers to questions that I couldn’t find anywhere else. I serve as the Relief Society President in my ward. Through this calling, I have been blessed with eyes to see others the way the Savior sees them. I am so excited to join you at Ensign Peak Academy. I know that we will have wonderful time learning and growing together!

Ben Muhlestein

2023-2024 Mentor: Self-Paced Unit Studies (see list below) 

Benjamin S. Muhlestein resides in Overton, Nevada and is a husband and father of a beautiful wife and six wonderful children. He served a Mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the Hawaii Honolulu Mission. He received his Bachelor’s of Paralegal Studies from Utah Valley University in 2002, and earned his Master’s Degree in Classical Liberal Arts from George Wythe University in 2016. He has mentored youth and adults nationally and internationally for many years. He taught Seminary for an entire school year as a student teacher.  He is the Founder of Illuminating the Light Within, Restoringthefounders.com, The Quintilian School of Oratory, and The George Washington Character Curricula. Benjamin has a deep passion for learning and teaching principles of liberty and freedom, and has great faith in the rising generation of youth to rise to the full potential of who God needs them to become.

  • Ancient Civilizations Unit Study
  • Middle Ages Unit Study
  • Renaissance, Reformation and Revolution Unit Study
  • US History: The Colonial Era Unit Study
  • US History: The Founding Era Unit Study
  • US History: The Building of a Nation Unit Study
  • Great Scientists Unit Study
  • Great Explorers Unit Study
  • American Founders Unit Study
  • US Government and Citizenship Unit Study
  • Common Forms of Government Unit Study
  • Foundation of Freedom Unit Study

Kim Reeder

2023-2024 Mentor: Emerald Unit Studies (3rd – 4th Grade Live)

Kim Reeder loves learning and helping others get an education to match their mission.  She has been happily married to Randy Reeder since 1999.  They live near Boise, Idaho where they have raised their five amazing children who are becoming awesome young adults.  

Kim graduated from Idaho State University in 2000 with a bachelor’s degree in Dental Hygiene.  She worked as a dental hygienist while Randy finished up his masters degree and realized that her true passion lies in teaching, not teeth. She retired from dental hygiene the summer of 2002, when Randy graduated and their 2nd child was born, thus beginning her real education.  

Homeschooling her own kids has led to many wonderful adventures and opportunities she couldn’t have anticipated – things like milking dairy goats, worm farming, and coaching FLL robotics teams to name a few.  As the kids got older and wanted to take classes with other kids, Kim began teaching a variety of classes through various hybrid schools.  She has taught book clubs, science, PE, and leadership classes.  

In 2017, she began teaching leadership classes online to 10 – 14 year olds and has enjoyed learning with kids all over the world since.  Having the online teaching experience was a huge blessing when the pandemic hit and Relief Society lessons were moved online.  As the 1st councilor in the Relief Society of her ward, Kim was able to seamlessly adapt to teaching the sisters in her ward through Zoom during that time. Kim has recently been teaching leadership principles online to adults as a fleet trainer for WIRA.   She is super excited to be bringing her online teaching experience to Ensign Peak Academy to learn with the 3rd and 4th graders this year.  

When she is not teaching online classes, Kim enjoys serving as an ordinance worker in the Boise Temple, gardening, running trails, and reading great books.  She loves the Come Follow Me program and currently serves as the 14-16 year old Sunday School teacher at church.  

April Brede

2023-2024 Mentor: Elementary Studio Art (live and self-paced)

April Brede earned her B.A. degree in English from the University of Utah in 2001. After graduation, April taught high school English in private institutions for nearly a decade. Most recently she has taught English as a second language for an online platform (VIPKID) for the past eight years. Despite an obvious background in English, April is also passionate about art. 

April made it a point to curate a fabulous art education through continuing education courses, in person courses and online courses along with years of hard work and practice. For the past two years, April has been instructing in-person classes at Art Nook. Her students range from five year olds through adults. April feels that art is a skill that can be learned and believes that anyone can create art with the right instruction. She believes that because we were created, we have a divine need to create! April wants to inspire young artists to create art that gives hope, celebrates God’s beautiful creations, and bears witness of individual worth.

April and her husband currently live in Aiken, South Carolina where they enjoy the outdoors with their Shelties and horses. They have two return missionary sons and a daughter-in-law, all whom currently live in Provo and attend BYU. 

Laura Waite, Mentor at Ensign Peak Academy

Laura 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!