Things you might like to know…
Teri: I am told some people are born to teach and I guess that includes me. Perhaps I began to teach as a child. I was the one always volunteering to help other children in my classroom. After earning my degree in education, I taught in various private schools, learning centers and special education programs while my husband served in the Air Force for nearly ten years. My early teaching experiences spanned five states from New Hampshire to Hawaii. During these years I taught children in all twelve grade levels, from gifted and talented, to learning disabled, and even developmentally delayed.
Then, in 1985, I experienced the Still Small Voice in my heart… “children, ministry, home… children, ministry, home…” eventually I opened up a small one-room school in my home and discovered that I had begun a “Cottage School.” Thus Christian Cottage Schools was born. Christian is first in the name because Jesus Christ is always first and foremost in our ministry and our lives.
As I began home educating my own children as well as others, I used many of the tried and true teaching ideas I had learned in learning centers and private special education programs. Since home schooling was pretty rare in those days, there were very few options available. Many times fellow home schoolers would marvel at my children’s joy of learning and quick progress. “What are you using? Can you help me too?” Soon home educators were coming to me on a regular basis for consultation and assessment. We have now helped thousands of children since 1986. We have also graduated hundreds of students from our Christian Cottage umbrella school program who have been welcomed into many higher education programs.
We also began writing our own curriculum. We have now self-published four volumes of unit studies with over 500 pages of text each. We also wrote four levels of Learning Rivers reading and writing curriculum that teaches children every sound in the English language in only 100 lessons. Our latest accomplishments include My Everything Book; with everything you ever need to know, and Teri’s Tips; which is all of the wonderful things I’ve learned after educating children and parents for over 25 years.
Our goal at Christian Cottage Schools has always been to support and empower parents as they exercise their God-given rights to control and direct the education of their children. We empower parents as home school teachers. We provide answers for them through testing, curriculum, teaching strategies and even proven education therapies.
Mike: I’m also a servant of the Lord Jesus. As Teri mentioned, I was on active duty with Air Force from 1974 to 1983. I received my commission from the Air Force Academy and graduated with my degree in Management and Business Administration. I also earned my Master of Science degree from USC in 1978. My career (both military and civilian) was as a manager in the telecommunications field. To my chagrin, I distinctly remember telling Teri that I didn’t “want to live in a school” when she first started teaching the kids at home. I knew she could teach, and I knew that I wasn’t completely satisfied with the public schools’ impact, especially on Jeremy, but…
In September, 1988, the Lord answered a long-standing prayer regarding my job in town, and I was laid off!! By that time, the school had out-grown Teri’s ability to cover all of the bases single-handedly, and my management training was needed here. Since then, we’ve been privileged to have a part in the tremendously exciting growth of several thousand children and their parents. We’ve helped hundred of students to graduate and begin lives as productive independent adults.
Meredith: I am Mike and Teri’s daughter, and have been a part of Christian Cottage since its inception, when I was in the first grade. I have been helping out in the office since I was a child, and began working part-time in high school. After graduation, I started working full-time, and eventually became the Office Manager. I am now working part-time as the Office Manager, Webmaster, Graphic Designer for all of our curriculum, producer of our products, and shipping and receiving!
I am also a PACE Trainer, which means that, like Teri, I can help children train their underlying processing skills and see major improvements in their processing in only a few weeks. I tutor other students as well from my home in Castle Rock, Co.
I am married to my wonderful husband and high school sweetheart, John Motley, who is also a Christian Cottage alum. John and I met in Civil Air Patrol, an auxiliary of the Air Force, when we were fourteen. We began our courtship at 17, and were engaged on my 18th birthday. We married when we were 19, and began parenthood at 20. We have two children, Jennifer, and James David, “JD.” We have home schooled with Christian Cottage since Jennifer was in first grade.
John is a firefighter for Cunningham Fire Protection District. We enjoy several hobbies as a family including attending indoor lacrosse games in Denver, Scouting, hiking, camping, and playing with our three big dogs.