Meet our speakers:

Click here to register for the 2019 MHA Joyful Homeschooling Convention, April 15, at the Midpointe Event Center in St. Paul. Online registration closes April 10. Registration available at the door.

Maren of Homeschool Unrefined

Maren Goerss is a homeschool mom, podcaster, and Jane of All Trades.  She loves talking personalities, going on a last minute adventure, playing an instrument or listening to a great audiobook or podcast.  Maren and Angela Sizer are the creators and hosts of Homeschool Unrefined, a podcast for keeping homeschool simple, real and fun. Maren holds a Masters degree in Education and spent eight years teaching in elementary education. She has been homeschooling in different forms since she became a parent in 2007. Maren blends her enthusiasm for fun with a belief that homeschool is at its best when we rock our strengths. More at She will be presenting How Kids Learn Best 10:30-11:25 a.m. and How Personalities Affect Homeschool 11:30-12:25.

Kara Anderson of Homeschooling Sister

Kara S. Anderson is half of the popular podcast Homeschool Sisters, podcast manager for The Read Aloud Revival, and contributor over at Homeschool Solutions with Pam Barnhill. Blogger and author Kara Anderson is a homeschooling mom with more than 11 years of experience in the trenches. She wants to help you thrive in your day-to-day life with your kids, and build wonderful memories together. More at She will be presenting on Relationships First They are the Key to Everything 10:30-11:25am, You Can’t Do It All (And Shouldn’t Even Try) 11:30-12:25, KEYNOTE How Do You Want Your Homeschool to Feel? 12:30-2pm, Don’t Homeschool for the Dentist (How to find your people when you’re homeschooling) 3-3:55, and MHA Member Meet and Greet dinner with Kara S. Anderson 5-6 p.m.

Alyson Dunneman

Alyson Duneman – Homeschool mom of 5, wife of a homeschool graduate, either way I’ve reached the place where my description starts with ‘mom of’. My occupational titles include: teacher, home engineer, cleaner, chef, party planner, field trip extraordinare, daycare provider, emotional therapist and mildly insane. She will be presenting: Preschool and Beyond, 4-4:55pm.

Jessica Lee is a board-certified music therapist and a Certified level two Music Together teacher and center director.  In addition to directing her Music Together center here in the Twin Cities, Jessica also works on the child/adolescent inpatient behavioral unit at the University of Minnesota Riverside Hospital.  She has many years experience working with diverse populations ranging from Music Therapy Assisted Childbirth to hospice.  Jessica speaks regularly at both regional and national level conferences about the importance of music and movement in early childhood.  She will be presenting: The Importance of Music and Movement, 5-6 p.m.

Rebecca McAllister

Rebecca McAllister. She will be presenting: Lighting the Fire: Cultivating a Love of Literature in Your Homeschool by Rebecca McAllister, 3-3:55

Theresa Ireland is the K-12 Collaboration Coordinator at Minnesota West Community and Technical College. She first began working in higher education as an undergraduate student, where she was a Peer Mentor for students on academic probation. She has also worked with undergraduate and graduate distance learners, and advised returning adult student populations. She now works with all PSEO programs at Minnesota West, including Concurrent Enrollment, CTE, and Early College. Theresa has a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology, and a Master’s of Education in Counseling with a specialization in Administration of Student Affairs, both from South Dakota State University. She is known for creative problem-solving and social justice advocacy. She will be presenting PSEO Basic for Homeschoolers, 4-4:55pm.

Amy Pass

Amy Pass is currently the MHA Board Secretary. She said, “I love talking with new homeschoolers about all their options, and I really appreciate what a large and vibrant homeschool community we have here in MN. I want to continue to see options for homeschoolers to build community (picnics, conferences, etc…), and I’m interested in how I can help make that happen. I believe that MHA is important as a non-sectarian, inclusive resource for homeschoolers in MN.”


Aza Donnelly

Aza Donnelly is an unschooling autistic mom to three autistic kids. Aza has been unschooling for more than ten years. For nearly thirty years she has been engaged in the disabled/neurodivergent community, as a professional, a parent, and as a neurodivergent individual. Aza’s focus is on self directed education, person-centered accommodations, and respectful parenting. Aza lives in an 860 sq foot house with two other adults, two kids, three cats, two rats, a tree filled with squirrels, and a pond of uncounted snails in the backyard. She likes coffee.

After 15 years of homeschooling two kids (one through to college), Barb Martinez is officially retired as homeschooling mom and have moved on to homeschooling educator. Her zeal for experiential learning wasn’t used up yet, so  she co-founded Ed Ed Homeschool with Krista Boos. They teach weekly classes that are focused on creative, learning-by-doing, activity-based classes in Minneapolis. “Now that I have the benefit of hindsight, I look forward to being a resource to other homeschoolers navigating those high school years and all that goes into it,” said Martinez.

Krista Boos is has homeschooled her 4 boys for over 15 years and has had 1 son graduate and another who is about to graduate. She has found that an eclectic and flexible style works best for their family and the variety of needs and personalities therein. Additionally, she and Barb Martinez teach classes for the middle grades where they love coming up with creative, engaging classes on a variety of topics. Homeschooling has been a good fit for her family for a long time and she’s grateful that she’s had such a supportive community along for the ride.