Elective Teacher Bios
Alyssa Barringer, Latin 1-2
Mrs. Barringer has been teaching Improv since 2007 and Latin since 2012. She studied English and theater at Wheaton College. When she’s not at the Greenhouse, you might find her drawing stick figures of Roman history, performing improvisational theater at Westside Improv, or reading stacks and stacks of books with her toddler. She attends Church of the Resurrection with her husband and son.
Kathryn BeifuSS, Drawing, Fiber Arts
Mrs. Beifuss has been teaching Visual Arts at Greenhouse since January 2003. She studied Illustration and Fiber Arts at NIU, and has been involved in the homeschooling community for more than 25 years - teaching not only her own four children (now all adults), but also privately, and for other homeschool support groups. Recently, she returned to school to study computer-based graphic design. Married to her husband, Jim, for more than 30 years, She attends St. Mark Church in Wheaton. The recent birth of her first grandchild, Frankie, has spurred a frenzy of activity, expanding her fiber arts abilities and efforts. Her other great love is learning enough about soil microbiology and native plants to create a healthy ecosystem in her own backyard.
Margaret Bell, Etiquette
Margaret Bell learned the principles of etiquette at Mount Sackville, an international boarding school. At Sion Hill, a finishing school, she also focused on domestic design and proper social behavior. Both schools are located in Dublin, Ireland, where she was also a debutante.
Margaret homeschooled her children with a focus on integrating spiritual formation, good manners, and solid social skills. She is a member of the Church of the Resurrection in Wheaton. Her husband James is a Christian publishing veteran and they have four children and six grandchildren.
Wesley Brown, Social Dance
Serving as a contra dance caller for Greenhouse since 2014, Mr. Brown has taught more than 40 classes and directed eight shows with Spotlight Youth Theater. He started singing at an early age, and has participated in more than 30 theatrical productions, both musical theater and opera, at the professional and semi-professional level. He has a Bachelor's degree in Music Education, with a concentration in Voice, from Wheaton College. He is a member of Church of the Resurrection, where he is involved both as a youth leader and in the church choir. Mr. Brown was himself home-schooled.
Susan Fischer, Spanish
A certified high school instructor with a BA in Spanish and a Masters in Liberal Arts, Mrs. Fischer has taught Spanish from entry level all the way up to AP at a variety of locations, including the University of Illinois and Wheeling and Buffalo Grove High Schools. While homeschooling her own five children, she taught Spanish classes out of her home for 8 years. When not in the classroom, Mrs. Fischer enjoys running, making road trips to visit her young adult children, and involving herself in a variety of leadership and teaching capacities at Highpoint Church in Naperville. She loves Jesus and delights in teaching anything, so the Greenhouse is a great fit.
Dr. Barbara Gauthier, Latin & Greek
When the public schools discontinued teaching Latin, she taught her youngest two sons at home. And she has not stopped. Since 2004, Dr. Gauthier has been wooing Greenhouse students to love the study of ancient languages. Dr. Gauthier received her Ph.D. in Medieval French Literature from Vanderbilt. She and her husband Stephen have four grown sons, and a new grandson. Dr. Gauthier is actively involved at Church of the Resurrection in Wheaton, as well as in reporting on all things Anglican. During the holidays, you are apt to find Dr. Gauthier carrying on a generations-old tradition of candy-making (some forty varieties).
Becky Michel, Writer's Workshop, Lit Circles, Inklings
Mrs. Michel was diagnosed with aggressive breast cancer at age 23. But God! Surviving 28 years cancer-free, she has lived with eternity in mind - investing her life intentionally - including 20 years homeschooling her three (miracle!) children. In 2009 the Lord led Becky to Greenhouse, matching gifts with mission. Recently, the fierce love and prayers of the Greenhouse community carried her through a second cancer battle. Forever grateful, Becky serves as Spiritual Director for Resound Now, coaches disciple-makers at Highpoint Church, and grows readers, writers, and Jesus-lovers at The Greenhouse. You can find her passionately declaring God’s power and faithfulness at ByFaithBecky.com.
Dr. Grady Parker, Introductory Logic, Economics
Dr. Parker began teaching at the Greenhouse in 2007. He holds a bachelor's degree from Wheaton College in Music History and Literature, an MA in Intellectual History from Northwestern University, and a Ph.D in Modern British History from Trinity College Dublin. Besides his work at the Greenhouse, he previously taught early modern and imperial British history at Trinity College Dublin. His research interests include 19th century British domestic politics and foreign policy. When he isn't teaching, Dr. Parker enjoys travelling and collecting antiquarian and rare books. He attends College Church in Wheaton.
Margaret Philbrick, IEW Writing
An author, gardener and teacher who desires to plant seeds in hearts, Mrs. Philbrick has a B.A. in Literature from Trinity University and a Masters in Teaching from National Louis University. She began cultivating writers at the Greenhouse in 2006. Her published works include a novel, essays, poetry and a children’s Christmas book. She serves on the Board of the Redbud Writers Guild and Church of the Resurrection where she and her family have attended for 20 years. Margaret blogs at www.margaretphilbrick.com