AFHE Speakers for Homeschool Groups

Several AFHE board members are available to speak to homeschool groups around the state free of charge. It is our privilege to be able to encourage and equip the parents you serve as they press on in the home education adventure.


If you are interested in having one of our board members speak to your homeschool group, please contact us at to let us know when, which topic(s) and speaker(s) you are interested in, which group you are with, and what part of the state you are in. We will follow up with you to coordinate schedules and see if we can accommodate your request.

Speaker Bios

Linda Crosby
Linda Crosby

Linda Crosby is gifted at transforming the daily God-moments from her life into unforgettable, hilarious, practical lessons that people can relate to. She has a heart for God and a desire to encourage other mothers to laugh in the center of the chaos and noise that children create. She considers motherhood the most important calling on earth. Linda is a writer and speaker for women’s events, mom’s clubs, and homeschool groups. She has written two books: Laughing in the Midst of Mothering and Laughing in the Midst of Marriage. Linda and her husband Rick have four children they have been homeschooling since 2001. Rick and Linda joined the AFHE board in 2011, and they are happy and humbled to be able to give back to the homeschool community.

Nancy Manos
Nancy Manos

Nancy Manos has been serving on the AFHE board of directors with her husband, James, since 2004. Nancy and James have two daughters whom they homeschooled from preschool through high school. The Manos’ home education journey was a rich, rewarding, sometimes challenging experience, and Nancy is passionate about encouraging others in the homeschool adventure. The Manos' family has expanded to include a wonderful son-in-law with the marriage of their oldest daughter. Nancy serves as the AFHE Convention Director as well as the Editor and Graphic Artist for AFHE’s quarterly magazine.

Sherry McKown

Sherry McKown has been serving on the AFHE Board with her husband Scott since 2012.The McKowns have four children, three teenagers and one in college. Sherry is passionate about navigating the homeschooling journey with heavy doses of encouragement and practical guidance along the way. She has served in leadership roles within homeschooling communities throughout the Phoenix area since 1997 including former president and board member of Eastside Explorers. Sherry and Scott were also founding members of West Valley Christian Home Educators. Sherry and Scott currently serve as the AFHE Exhibit Hall Coordinators. The McKowns enjoy sharing their homeschooling journey with other families as they learn to be purposeful in their calling, stay the course, and finish well.


Workshop Descriptions - Linda Crosby

Encouragement for Homeschool Moms

Homeschool moms need to be refreshed, rejuvenated, and revived. Linda takes her audience on an entertaining journey through her many years of homeschooling. She gives moms hope for having clear direction, being their child’s watchman and lovingly guiding their pupils to their heavenly father. This seminar is full of the Word and applicable life lessons that will encourage moms, revive them in their faith, and help them to relax, enjoy their calling and remember that God’s joy is for life (even homeschool life!).

Laughing in the Midst of Mothering

Linda’s heart is to build up fellow moms and help them find humor and God’s purpose in the most important calling on earth – motherhood. Based on the stories in her first book, she vividly shares her amusing struggles and triumphs as a busy mom. There is always another mess to clean, another child to calm down, and another mound of laundry to do. Laughing in the midst of such daily challenges is a skill that benefits us all, especially when we are very busy and stressed out. Following examples from God’s Word, Linda prepares mothers to face their daily tasks with peace and joy in their hearts and homes.

Making History Come Alive

It IS possible for the subject of history to be entertaining, exciting, and educational, not only for your kids, but for YOU! If you just rolled your eyes at the first sentence, this history-teaching rejuvenation session is the one your kids want you to attend. Linda has been keeping history alive in their homeschool for more than a decade through hands-on learning. You CAN step away from the text and make history real. Linda will share ideas galore for your note-taking pleasure. (Papier maché will only be mentioned once—maybe twice.)

Hands-On Learning: Fun for Kids of All Ages

You can read to your kids about John Gutenberg’s invention of the moveable type printing press and they might remember it.  Or they can glue macaroni alphabet letters backwards onto their own presses to print Bible verses themselves and they WILL remember it!  Hands-on learning is not simply to keep little hands busy, it is a valuable tool to teach children various skills, help them retain information, and relate to the subjects and people they are studying.  Linda addresses this issue using humor, anecdotes, and wisdom from her 25+ year of teaching children.  This seminar is especially for the mom who feels non-creative, unorganized, and even ill equipped to teach her kids!  Don’t fret! You will leave with easy ideas to implement at home.

"No Child Left Inside!"
Using Field Trips to Enhance Learning

Do you have days when you simply need to get out of the house? Are the kids ready and willing to set their indoor work aside for a while?  Come and hear Linda’s ideas and expertise about field trips and get inspired to discover the joy of venturing out the front door!  Whether it’s once a week or once a month, use field trips to enhance the learning in your homeschool.  Two-and-a-half of Linda’s 13 years of homeschooling were designated “Field Trip” years with extensive study specifically focused on learning away from home.  Come and hear lively tales of hiking through cave dwellings, chasing sheep into pens, escaping on the Underground Railroad and many more!  Uncover the wonder of God’s world with your children and broaden their homeschool experience.

Tag! You're It!

Linda helps you take a humorous, yet thought-provoking look at discovering the TAG (talents, abilities, & gifts) God placed in your life. Each of us was uniquely created for a purpose. Through firsthand experiences from her own personal trial and errors, Linda empowers listeners to fill the spot that is entirely their own in God’s family.

God Fills in the Gaps

Come and laugh with author, speaker, and homeschool mom, Linda Crosby, as she takes us on an entertaining journey through her many years of homeschooling. You will be refreshed, rejuvenated, and revived. Linda gives hope for homeschooling parents to enjoy each day with your children, to never lose sight of why you do what you do, and most importantly to never forget that it is God who fills in the gaps.

Lapbooking Made Easy

Come and learn how your kids can organize, “publish,” and preserve their work in a compact folder!  This is a fun, hands-on, instructional workshop where you will learn folding tricks, create several mini-books, and make a lapbook to bring home for your children to start using. You don’t have to be a craftsy mom to use lapbooks. Linda will go step-by-step through the entire lapbooking process.  Lapbooks can enhance any subject from pre-k to grade 12. The possibilities are endless.  They are a fantastic, interactive, and educational tool for every style of learner.  Join Linda and see for yourself why lapbooks are a treasure!

Getting Started Homeschooling

So, you’ve decided to homeschool your children.  Now what?  If you are at this jumping in point and need direction navigating your homeschool journey, this workshop is for you!  Homeschool mom-survivor since 2001, Linda Crosby is equipped to answer your questions:  How do I teach several kids at different levels? Where do I find curriculum? What about report cards?  Do I need an American flag in the kitchen? Do I need a teaching certificate? Can video games count as something? What is the homeschool law in Arizona?  Are pajamas a homeschool uniform? Plus many, many more!

Ideas for Lesson Planning and Scheduling

Benjamin Franklin hit the nail on the head with his declaration, “If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail.” As a homeschool parent it is imperative for the success of your homeschool that you have a plan in place. Veteran homeschool mom, Linda Crosby, will show you how to lay out your year, month, week, and day with schedules that will allow for flexibility in your homeschool. This practical session will get you started on the right foot with a workable schedule to keep you aimed in the right direction in the areas that are most important to you. Linda will present a variety of schedules to give you planning ideas, as well as helpful hints for dealing with interruptions, housework and chores, keeping the toddler occupied, fitting it all in, eliminating time stealers, setting goals for your child, plus more. Come join Linda and plan to succeed!

Curriculum: How Do I Choose?

When embarking upon this exciting journey of home education, figuring out which curriculum to choose for your child can seem daunting. In this very practical workshop, Linda will give an objective overview of the different learning styles and help you understand the most common teaching approaches including textbook, living books, unit studies, classical, Charlotte Mason, eclectic, unschooling, and more. Let Linda help you narrow down your choices and take the guesswork out of choosing curriculum. This workshop will boost your confidence in making educational decisions for success in your homeschool.


Workshop Descriptions - Nancy Manos

Getting Started in Homeschooling

We’ll cover foundational things you need to know as you embark upon this journey of home education from basic supplies to have on hand to what’s required by Arizona law and how to file your affidavit. We’ll also cover ideas for lesson planning, creating a schedule that works for your family, the benefits of joining a local homeschool group, and how to balance extracurricular activities.

Ideas for Hands-on Learning

It is a rich experience where learning is a hands-on, multi-sensory, interactive adventure. Nancy will share easy-to-implement, inexpensive, rewarding ideas for incorporating hands-on learning for children of all ages. You can make learning a joy for your child without a huge investment of time, energy, or resources.

You Are Enough! Encouragement for the Homeschool Mom

Feeling weary? Worried that you’re failing your children? Need a boost of confidence to keep plugging along? Join Nancy as she reminds us that God has placed our children in our families and that He has equipped us to raise them. She’ll share encouragement from God’s Word that will refresh you and revitalize you in your mission as a homeschooling mom.

How to Start a Small Homeschool Co-op

Participating in a co-op can be an amazing opportunity to enrich your home education adventure. Nancy will share from her own experiences the benefits of doing a co-op along with a great deal of practical information that will help you succeed in starting and running your own homeschool co-op.

Tips for Successful Homeschooling

Nancy shares tips she’s learned along the way for making the home education adventure more effective and fruitful ... and more enjoyable, too! We’ll talk about what success looks like, and what it does not look like. Glean ideas to help you organize your time, your home, your schedule, and your life in ways that will foster a successful homeschool experience with your children.

Preserving Home Education Freedom

Freedom is something we are prone to take for granted until there is a threat to that freedom. Once freedom is lost it is much harder to gain back. We’ll talk about some of the requirements we are free from today, potential threats to our freedom to homeschool our children, and why it is critical that we be vigilant in protecting the freedom we currently enjoy. This talk goes nicely with showing the video, “Exposing a Trojan Horse.”

The Price Is Right

Being a homeschooling family requires a great deal of sacrifice and investment. As a veteran homeschool mom who taught her children at home all the way through high school, Nancy will tell you that the price is absolutely right! When we choose to homeschool our children, we have the opportunity to nurture and develop the unique gifts and abilities the Lord has placed in each one of our children at a much deeper level than if they were in someone else's care everyday. In this session we will talk about the price we pay and remind ourselves why we started this journey and how we can finish strong. Option: We can include one or more homeschool-related Price Is Right pricing games for some interactive fun and laughter!

The Joy of Homeschooling

The idea of teaching our children at home can be a rather dreamy notion. We imagine happy, contented, obedient children that rise early, complete their chores without complaint, and cheerfully gather around the kitchen table eager to learn. The reality often involves struggles that can leave a mom feeling overwhelmed and inadequate with children who are equally frustrated. The truth is that while the nitty gritty of teaching our children is sometimes messy and emotional with a variety of highs and lows, homeschooling is a great privilege and yes, even a joy! Join Nancy as she shares encouragement to bolster you on those challenging days and refresh you as you endeavor to create an atmosphere of joy in this adventure with your children.

Using Lapbooks to Enhance Learning

Lapbooks are a great way to enhance learning and allows your child to create a review of what's been learned in a compact folder. Come and learn the basics of lapbooking in this fun, hands-on, instructional workshop! Nancy will go step-by-step through the entire lapbook making process including covering folding tips for creating a variety of mini-books to go inside the lapbook. You'll make a sample lapbook to take home with you in this workshop. Lapbooks can be used with many different subjects by students of all ages. They are a fantastic, interactive, educational tool for every style of learner.

Curriculum Approaches

Homeschooling jargon can be confusing even for seasoned homeschool parents. In this workshop, Nancy will give an overview of many of the most common curriculum approaches including textbook, unit studies, classical, Charlotte Mason/living books, eclectic, and relaxed/life of learning. We will also go over examples of curriculum and resources that tend to work best with each approach.

Support Group Leadership

As the AFHE Support Group Liaison since 2004, Nancy has spent a lot of time visiting with and encouraging homeschool support group leaders from across Arizona. In addition, Nancy spent 10 years running her own email network to help homeschool families connect and share information with one another. Nancy will ask questions to help you renew and revitalize your vision and focus for your group. She will also share advice from seasoned support group leaders for dealing with a variety of issues and challenges unique to running a homeschool support group.

The Price Is Right - For Support Group Leaders

Leading a homeschool support group requires a substantial amount of sacrifice by the leaders and their families. In this session, we will talk about the various ways we pay a high price to encourage others in the home education journey, and why it is a worthwhile price to pay. We will also discuss ways to keep wise boundaries, recruit help from others, and find a healthy balance as you juggle not only homeschooling your own children but serving and supporting other families. Option: We can include one or more homeschool-related Price Is Right pricing games for some interactive fun and laughter!

Workshop Descriptions - Sherry McKown

Homeschool Co-ops: Educational and Social

Have you ever asked yourself if you should consider participating in a homeschool co-op? Do you wonder how to join one, what type to join, what the different types are, or if you should start your own? Sherry McKown helps navigate the benefits of gathering with like-minded families for learning opportunities. She explains the differences between an educational co-op versus a social co-op, and how each one could be of benefit to your family during different seasons of life. With her experience as a leader of one of the largest homeschool support groups in Phoenix, as well as starting several smaller co-ops, she will discuss and uncover the benefits and challenges that should be considered when deciding to participate in a homeschool co-op.

Optimizing your Co-op Experience

Do your kids find themselves rushing out the door, having stayed up late the night before doing co-op homework, only to arrive at co-op and realize that no one is taking last week's work seriously? Participating in a co-op with like-minded families is a must! Sherry speaks about the logistics of setting up a group and how to make the most of your co-op time together.  She will answer your questions such as: How many days a week do you meet? What subjects do you teach or explore? What are the expectations of each family’s involvement? How do you address discipline or behavior issues? With time being one of our most valuable commodities in family life, your co-op should reflect this.  Co-ops should be considered an enrichment opportunity and privilege rather than replacement for the parent as the primary instructor.  All these dynamics will be covered to make your co-op experience of the most benefit to your family in your current season of life.

Co-op Dynamics: Exploring the Strengths and Harnessing the Challenges

In this workshop, Sherry McKown will explore the mystery of having a great co-op experience. She will cover topics such as the benefit of having the same worldview with other families in the co-op; celebrating the different teaching strengths among the parents; setting clear, concise expectations, and dealing with challenges and unrealistic expectations with grace; managing communication in a healthy, productive manner; setting a dress code, code of conduct, and other boundaries that keep the group safe and on the same page; avoiding pitfalls; and more.