CHEB Academic Centers

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Our Teachers

New Horizons Academy


Nikole Christensen

Nikole Christensen began homeschooling in 2009 and became committed to the goal of providing her own 3 children with a quality education that is adaptable to each child's needs and is focused on developing a love for God and his people. Her professional career has included writing and editing for the American Horticultural Society and the group travel industry as well as the publications of home building, restaurant and travel agent associations. She is a 20+ year member of Immanuel Baptist Church and a former member of The Junior League of Lexington and the Lexington chapter of Sweet Adelines barbershop chorus. She has volunteered with church youth, served as a tour guide at Ashland, and led the Fayette County Homeschool 4-H Club for several years. Nikole has taught fiber arts, ancient and medieval history, literature, World Wars 1 and 2, nature explorers, paper Sloyd, and 50 states classes at Learning Zone and etiquette, speech, medieval history, and church history classes at NHA in recent years. She also loves dogs and frequently hosts doggie playdates. Nikole enjoys knitting and needle arts, and reading--ask her about book club!


Amanda Cooper

Amanda is a mother of 3 kiddos...Tori 18, Jack 11, and Leah 8. She has been homeschooling for going on 5 years now. She and her husband JD live here in Lexington and attend Immanuel Baptist Church at Armstrong Mill. Jack, Leah and JD all play the piano and she loves to listen to music and enjoys teaching about great composers.


Cindy Crissman

Cindy is best known to the children of CHEB as “the lady with the dog” since she’s been raising puppies to become service dogs for the past two years and is usually accompanied by at least one sweet-natured canine companion. She has served as the administrator of Learning Zone for three years and is currently the CHEB board president. For such a tough task master, Cindy always has a big smile for everyone. She has taught classes in missionary biographies and art for several years in Learning Zone and will be teaching middle school civics again this year. When Cindy is not serving others or handing out dog biscuits, she’s a busy mother of two teens and a Mother/Baby nurse and Lactation Consultant at UK Hospital. She and her husband John are members of St. Luke United Methodist Church.  


Humaira Dale

Humaira has BA in Spanish  Education from Asbury University and Masters of Spanish from the University of Kentucky. Before, staying home with her children, she taught at Lexington Christian Academy, UK, and Asbury University. She has been homeschooling for 13 years. John, her husband, and she have 7 children.  She has been teaching Spanish to homeschoolers from her home for 20 years. She is excited to be part of the CHB teaching team. In her spare time she enjoys running, cross training, reading, watching classic movies and working for Jamberry Nails and Health through Nutrition.


Cindy Fawcett

Cindy has a BA in Political Science, but discovered her love for teaching during the early years of homeschooling her sons. In the last 13 years, she has taught writing, literature and personal finance with several homeschool co-ops. Cindy has a passion for teaching writing and literature in a manner that alleviates student fear and anxiety. She is looking forward to working with the students and families of NHA again this year.


Gladie Green 

Gladie Green’s varied educational background includes a BS in Agricultural Economics from New Mexico State University, a M.Div. from the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and a J.D. from the University of Kentucky College of Law. Gladie and her husband of 32 years, J.D. are grateful to God for the blessing of their 5 children and 5-year-old granddaughter. In addition to homeschooling their children, Gladie has assisted families primarily through the practice of adoption law. The Greens are beginning their 22nd year of homeschooling and their 12th year of NHA. 


Vickie Johnson

Vickie was born in rural Nebraska in 1948. Resources were scarce for art classes growing up, but my parents saw that art was my passion and did all they could to support me. 

She took some general art classes in College, but her knowledge of basic art concepts limited my success. It wasn’t until she took private art lessons in my 20’s and found the book Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain that she truly began to develop my skills and who she was as an artist.

  • Last 42 years she has taught painting and drawing to hundreds of students
  • Commissioned for Hospital Art Murals in Chicago and West Virginia in the early ‘80’s
  • Havsowned my own Art Studio since 1997, teaching and selling art
  • Began learning pottery in 2005 and currently owns her own potting studio with pieces in Completely Kentucky and The Woolery,(Frankfurt) and Damsel Fly Gallery (Midway)
  • Currently display works in Regional Craft and Art Shows

Michelle Lavin

Michelle Lavin graduated from Becker College in Leicester Massachusetts and holds a AS in Travel and Tourism. She was both a corporate and leisure destination specialist and an instructor for a New England Travel Agent school. Michelle and her husband Casey have been married for 30+ years. She loves being a mother to her three children and has been homeschooling for the past 14 years.  She has traveled extensively, both international and domestic. She moved here from Maine 9 years ago and enjoys traveling with her family throughout Kentucky, attending pulling competitions with their team of draft horses.


Elizabeth Lin

Elizabeth has a BS in Biology and Chemistry from Cumberland College and a PhD in Pharmaceutical Sciences from the University of Kentucky.  She has been homeschooling her four boys for the past 17 years, and she also tutors several elementary and college students.  She is currently a Visiting Assistant Professor at Morehead State University and has previously taught at Eastern Kentucky University and the College of Pharmacy at the University of Kentucky.  She also serves on the board of the CHEB homeschool group.  She is an active member of Tates Creek Christian Church where she plays in the orchestra and handbell choir.  


Christy Newman

Christy grew up in south Lexington and is a dyed-in-the-wool Wildcat. She loves sweet tea, old books and dogs, and she’s more likely to have paint under her nails than on them. Her husband Justin is a member of the National Guard and their family attends Broadway Christian Church. Their two girls are fast approaching the middle grade years and keep Christy’s life hoppin’. Christy likes the tenants of Charlotte Mason’s theories that children are born persons and that they will learn best when offered an abundant feast of the true, good and beautiful. She has taught art, insects and geography classes at Learning Zone and economics for middle school at NHA.


Sarah Russell

Sarah inherited her passion for words from her grandmother and has been consuming literature like candy since she was a little girl. Her love of the written word has made her an advocate for learning and she is looking forward to sharing that love with high school students this year. Sarah studied English at the University of the Cumberlands and is married to Jeremy, a Sergeant with the Lexington Police Department. They have four children, Deuce, Kayla, Lainey, and Josie, who are each at various stages in the CHEB experience and have made lasting friendships along the way. Sarah also serves as CHEB’s preschool teacher, giving her Monday afternoons entirely over to the varying whims of our tiny scholars as they read stories, sing funny songs, create artwork, and learn to play together. 


Dawn Webb

Dawn teaches Middle School history and science as well as Biology at NHA. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Occupational Therapy. She is married to Chuck and has two daughters. Her oldest is a graduate of NHA and Morehead State University while her youngest daughter remains at home. She has taught science classes with LZ and NHA for many years. Her hobbies include reading, hiking, gardening, and history.


Learning Zone Teachers


Chenoa Beard

Chenoa has a Bachelor's degree in Elementary Education from Lindsey Wilson College and a Reading Specialist Master's degree from Georgetown College. She taught in the elementary classroom for 8 years before becoming a stay-at-home mom. She and her husband, Dustin, have 3 children, ages 5, 4, and 1. She loves being able to homeschool her children and is excited to get back in the "classroom" this year with Learning Zone. Chenoa and her family are very involved in their church, Center Point Church, and they love to spend time with their extended family and friends, as well as running Blessings for the Bluegrass, a non-profit in Lexington.


Erin Bodager

Erin and her family began their homeschooling journey when her firstborn was in kindergarten. She didn't know how long homeschooling would last, but eight years later they are still on the journey. Along the way she hopes her children are developing an enjoyment of learning, but more importantly that they are all learning to love God and others more fully. Erin has a BS in accounting from Lipscomb University and a MA in missions from Abilene Christian University. She enjoys reading, sewing, swimming, cheering for Michigan State basketball, and hanging out with her husband. 


Adrienne Carroll

Adrienne is a mom to three kids: Chloe, Connor, and Chandler. She's been married to Richard for 13 years and they have lived in Lexington for the past 10 years. She loves spending time with her family and getting creative with redecorating and landscaping projects at home as well as a few blow-out VBS themed projects that take over her entire garage a few weeks a year. She is an active member of Broadway Baptist Church where she serves as the Awana Commander and the Chair of the Women's Ministry.


Stephani Gifford

Stephani has a degree in Early Childhood Education but has learned more about educating children by Doing Things The Hard Way. She is a parent, foster parent, and soon-to-be-adoptive parent of 7 children and is on her 12th year of homeschooling. Stephani currently spends her days teaching her oldest to drive and convincing her twin toddlers to leave their clothes on. She is excited to teach the 2-and-3-year-old class in Learning Zone this year.


Melissa Kramer


Brianna Legg

Brianna and her husband, Brent, have 2 girls, Bailey, 7, and Zoey, 4, and a son coming from Korea (adoption in progress). The Legg family is very involved in their church, Providence Community, they love to travel, go on field trips, host play dates, and be outside. Brianna enjoys fellowship with other women, lots of coffee, chocolate, and finding a great bargain. She has a Bachelor's degree in Political Science from the University of Nevada and was a District Director for the governor of Kentucky before becoming a homemaker. Brianna has been on this homeschooling adventure for four years and is thankful for time she gets to spend teaching and learning from her kids.


Tiffany Parsons

Tiffany is a Versailles native, a saltaholic, and mama to 4 children. Tiffany and her husband Christian are registered foster parents, so the number of children in their house is sporadic. She is fluent in both sarcasm and Spanish which she has taught in LZ classes. Her resume includes a degree from Georgetown College, and she prides herself in having survived and mostly enjoyed homeschooling her children for the last 7 years. She surrounds herself with her close-knit family and is active in her church, Lexington City Church. Tiffany is pleased to be serving as the administrator of Learning Zone again this year.  


Sarah Russell

Sarah has held court over our preschool room for several years now, although she would consider herself the jester as much as the queen. She is a mother of four children who have all outgrown the preschool realm, but Sarah gets her preschooler fix each week by loving on our sweet CHEB little ones. She works hard to keep everyone safe and contented and isn’t deterred by a few tears or tantrums. Sarah has a heart for children. She attends St. Luke United Methodist Church and is a leader in the local and state chapters of the Fraternal Order of Police Auxiliary. She is an avid reader and works part-time at a local church's parents day out program. 


Dawn Webb

Dawn teaches Middle School history and science as well as Biology at NHA. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Occupational Therapy. She is married to Chuck and has two daughters. Her oldest is a graduate of NHA and Morehead State University while her youngest daughter remains at home. She has taught classes with LZ and NHA for many years. Her hobbies include reading, hiking, gardening, and history.