Down Home

The SLOCA Blog

Team SLOCA Friday Faves: Lower and Upper Middle School

October 13th, 2017

{staff photo by Cameron Ingalls}

We have passed the halfway point in our Team SLOCA Friday Faves blog series!  Are you ready to meet our Lower Middle School (LMS) and Upper Middle School (UMS) teachers? This rock-solid team has been investing in our logic stage students for years, and we are thrilled to introduce them to you today.

Below are the photos each staff member sent in, showing a few favorite items (their “faves”), or things they use every day, or objects that represent something important to them. Some included comments, but if they didn’t, you’ll have to find them and ask them about anything that piques your interest! In most cases you can click on each photo to see a slightly larger version.

Again, we want to let you know that although we don’t have photos of each teacher to go along with their curated “faves” photos, you can find a sketch of many (but not all) of our Team SLOCA members on the Our Staff page of our website.

Jennifer Wright, LMS Lead Teacher; LMS Core Teacher:

  • Bike Helmet: I love to ride my bike with friends! I try to mountain and road ride a few times a week, and have especially enjoyed exploring the new trails at the Pismo Preserve! I am hoping for a crash-free year since the last three have resulted in stitches, broken bones, and face- plants. 
  • Concerts in the Plaza: I love live music, and especially look forward to Friday nights in the summer where I enjoy listening to fantastic bands and people watching at the SLO Mission. It's a fun crowd...the true locals.  
  • My Bling: I have raced in 1/2 marathons, triathlons, road races, and even swam from Alcatraz to San Francisco. My race days are over for now.... but maybe I'll race again someday to celebrate the Big 5-0!
  • Samantha & Brooke are Flying the Coop: My oldest daughter, Samantha,  is starting her freshman year at UC Riverside and plans to major in film and screenwriting. Brooke is a senior in high school and is interested in business or chemistry. 
  • Birds and Bikes: I like to keep my jewelry simple, and love the sweet bird necklace a student gave me four years ago. 


Wendy Rey, LMS Core Teacher, Friday Foundations LMS Teacher:

  • My family
  • Roller coasters
  • Reading
  • Traveling
  • The Dodgers
  • Coffee
  • Hiking


Pamela Gerhardt, LMS and UMS Latin Teacher; 4-Day Lab Teacher:

  • My life revolves around my faith and my family, hence the artwork with the cross and the dove, and the family photo.  Imagine a heart drawn around the photo, as each person there is a bit of my heart walking in this world.  My husband, 4 sons, 3 daughters-in-law, 2 daughters and 2 sons-in-law and my 10 grandchildren all bring me so much joy.  Just when you think your family is getting smaller as each one moves out of the house you realize your family is indeed becoming larger! 
  • Outside of SLOCA, which happily fills much of my life, I love riding my bike, and especially near the ocean. 
  • I also enjoy my near-daily swim and exercising so that I may stay strong enough to lift those grandbabies. 
  • The fruit and the flowers are from our farm and the clippers represent the work it takes to keep it going! 
  • I also enjoy reading, including the writings of C.S. Lewis, the book behind is my well-used Latin dictionary. 
  • I purpose to make time for knitting as I love the feel of the fibers and the harmony of the colors as the garment takes shape. 
  • Lastly, the hankie represents, to me, the beauty of femininity and the joy of being a woman.  My life is full and I am blessed.


Cade Newman, UMS History/Literature Teacher:


Sarah Weinschenk, UMS and HS Latin Teacher:


Alanna LaBine, UMS Math and Science Teacher:


Jenna Burns, UMS Logic Teacher; Accreditation Coordinator:

  • Robot vacuum - I love how this guy vacuums and I don't.
  • Puma exercise socks - My gym time is my me time and there's nothing quite like finding the perfect pair of exercise socks.
  • Echo Dot - I use this to set alarms, timers, play music, hear the news, turn on/off my lights, and order stuff of Amazon. And I must say, I feel pretty cool doing it.
  • Soliel & Turkey Jerky - yum my favorite snack combo!
  • My latest embroidery project - I don't often spend time on my hobbies, but here's my latest.
  • Essential oil roller - This lovely concoction helps tuck me in each night.


Guy Kinnear, LMS, UMS and HS Art Teacher:

  • my traveling keys
  • my traveling coffee
  • my traveling studio
  • my traveling artist models

We appreciate you, teachers! Thanks for sharing these glimpses into your lives. On we go, with more teachers to meet next Friday…


SLO Classical Academy is not affiliated with any of the above mentioned websites or organizations.