Meet Ms. Jessica! As a grade school student she was quiet and kind to everyone, we are thankful that she is teaching our kindergartners to be quiet and kind to everyone.
Ms. Jessica’s favorite habit is synergize because it is so important to learn to work together! She would like her students to know “they should always be a trying lion and never give up. You can do anything you put you mind to!”
Life Hashtag: #humble&kind
Can’t Live Without: Her Faith & Chocolate
Life Motto: “Find the beauty in every day!”
Special Talent: Knitting
Life Motto: “Today I choose joy”
Meet Ms. Reita! She comes to IAC with over 15 years of experience at the K-12 level and 3 years of experience in higher education. She loves spending time with family, friends, and her three dogs. She enjoys photography, walking her dogs, and drinking coffee while curled up with a cozy blanket.
Ms. Reita’s favorite Habit is Synergy because being a team player makes everyone stronger! It is teamwork, open-mindedness, and the adventure of finding new solutions to old problems. When people begin to interact together genuinely, and they’re open to each other’s influence, they begin to gain new insight.
First Job: Babysitter at Shanty Creek Schuss Mountain Resort
Alma Mater: Western Michigan University
Can’t Live Without: Coffee
Favorite book Series: Harry Potter
Favorite Quote: “You don’t have to move mountains. Simply fall in love with life. Be a tornado of happiness, gratitude, and acceptance. You will change the world just by being a warm, kind-hearted, human being.” Anita Krizzan
Meet Ms. Bailey! She is starting her first-year teaching at IAC. She is currently working with students who qualify for Special Education supports and services. When Ms. Bailey was in college, she took a semester off and lived in Maseru, Lesotho where she volunteered at an orphanage for several months. She fell in love with the kids there, and some day will adopt a child from there!
Favorite Food: She couldn’t just pick one so…. Pasta and tacos!
Life Motto: “Give to those who have nothing to give to you” Rupi Kaur
Can’t Live Without: Her 2-year-old golden retriever Griffyn!!
Bucket List Item: Take a year off of work with her fiancé and travel the world!
First Job: Paper Boy
Favorite snack food: Chicken wings
Can’t live without: Coffee
Life Motto: Rejoice always
Meet Ms. Carrie! She has spent the past ten years as a middle school science teacher. Carrie has lived in Michigan, Illinois, and Virginia and taught in all three states. She is now happy to call west Michigan her final home with her husband, three daughters, a rabbit, and a horse.
Life Motto: “Everyone you meet, knows something you don’t.” – Bill Nye
Favorite Author: Malcolm Gladwell
Hobbies: Running, biking, hiking…any activity outdoors!
First Job: Working at my dance studio in high school.
Can’t live without: Coffee in the morning.
Meet Ms. Holly! She is our favorite lunch lady. She is kind and caring. She has been in food service for over 18 years. This is her first year at Innocademy.
Hobbies: Collecting rocks from Lake Michigan, hiking, photography, and most of all, she loves spending time with her family.
Can’s live without: Mountain Dew
Bucket List: Travel to Alaska
First Job: Babysitting and caring for farm animals.
Life Motto: “Be grateful for what you have, and not what you want.”
Meet Mrs. Mead! She comes to IAC with several years teaching experience and is ready to teach her students where they are and help them grow to their fullest potential. She loves spending time with family and friends, riding bikes, walking her dogs, and watching movies curled up on the couch.
Mrs. Mead’s favorite Habit is Synergy because being a team player makes everyone stronger! She wants to remind students to, “spread kindness like confetti;” it’s important to always be kinder than you feel. Making others happy, makes you happy in return.
First Job: Babysitter
Favorite snack: Cheese and Crackers
Favorite book: The Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone
Favorite Quote: “Reach for the moon. Even if you miss, you’ll land among the stars.”
Meet Ms. Becca! She has been a part of the IES family for 5 years. Ms. Becca’s first job ever was a lifeguard and then a music teacher/piano teacher for years and years. Jim is Becca’s husband and they enjoy swimming, sailing, cycling and cross country skiing. The Beebe boys live on both sides of North America and smack dab in the middle in Indiana. Ms. Becca is our Speech-language pathologist helping students think and talk about language by turning on their best voices.
Ms. Becca’s favorite habit is “Put first things first” because she is motivated by the reward at the end of the tunnel and she really wants her students to know that feeling of accomplishment. “I want our learning to be effective and always fun. When you are dismissed from speech we will celebrate together.”
Bucket List: Become a Gramma!
Special Talent: She can spot a Petoskey stone faster than anyone she knows.
Life Motto: If you pass physics, you can do this.
Favorite Book: The Hobbit
Meet Ms. Shelly! Ms. Shelly is beginning her 4th year with us as a teacher assistant. Ms. Shelly has “visit every continent” on her bucket list! She is almost there since she has visited Canada, Mexico, India, and Germany.
Ms. Shelly’s favorite habit is Be Proactive because it is the habit she is working to improve for herself. She would like her students to know “be yourself because you are pretty awesome!”
Favorite Snack: Coffee
Can’t Live Without: Hope
Life Motto: Love changes everything
Favorite Book: Pride and Prejudice
Meet Ms. Tara! Ms. Tara works as a teacher assistant at IAC. Ms. Tara’s special talent is skydiving and we are thankful she has dove into working with our students.
Ms. Tara would like her students to know “it is not only okay, but good to take chances.”
First Job: Babysitting/ice cream shop worker in a campground
Favorite Snacks: Zucchini, Squash, and chocolate (not necessarily that order)
Favorite Book Series: Mitford Series
Type of Grade School Student: Shy, polite, obedient, and cried very easily
Meet Ms. Krista. She joins IAC as a teacher assistant in the upper elementary classrooms. Ms. Krista is a graduate of Hope College and has been spending the last few years at home with her two sons, as well as being an active volunteer and then staff member at Little Hawks preschool at the Outdoor Discover Center. She is excited to be a part of IAC as we expand our Nature Based programming. Her favorite quote is, “Never underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.” Leo Buscaglia
Favorite Snack: Cake, brownies, cookies — anything chocolate!
Can’t Live Without: Faith, Family
Favorite Hobby: Gardening and Traveling
Meet Mr. Ken! This is Mr. Ken’s first year with IAC, working as an Interventionist. Mr. Ken enjoys camping around the wonderful state of Michigan with his family, and especially enjoys visiting the Upper Peninsula. Mr. Ken wants each of his students to know that “there are no failures in life, just discoveries.”
Ms. Hillary has sang her way into all our hearts last year as she joined our IES Family. She brings music to all our lives by instructing general music at both Zeeland and Allegan campuses as well as oldest friend’s (grades 5-8) choir at Innocademy Zeeland’s campus. Ms. Hillary’s music wins our heart, but toasted coconut ice cream from Kilwins is the way to her heart.
Ms. Hillary loves the seven habits so much it was hard for her to choose just one. Habit 3 Put first things, first” is one of her favorites because she finds it really helpful to make sure she takes things one step at a time and identifies what needs to be done to accomplish a great goal. She also really loves Habit 5 Seek first to understand, then to be understood because if humanity could practice this habit, our world would be a brighter and more loving place for all. Finally, Ms. Hillary wants her students to know that ”they are all music makers no matter what skills and abilities they bring into the classroom.”
Bucket List: Eating her way through a trip to Italy and France
Special Talent: Classically trained opera singer
First Job ever: Cash register clerk at a dry cleaner
Meet Ms. Emily! Emily teaches art at both campuses. She enjoys creating art of her own, as well as spending time with her family, hiking and traveling, reading, and walking her dog. Emily’s favorite of the Seven Habits is Synergize; she loves working with others. Ms. Emily wants students to remember, “If at first you do not succeed, try, try again!”
Favorite Snack: Ice Cream
Bucket List: Travel to the Grand Canyon
Can’t Live Without: Morning Coffee
Favorite Book: Where the Crawdads Sing
Meet Ms. Michelle!! This is technically her first year at Innocademy, but started at the end of the last school year. She comes to us with 20+ years of experience from GSRP preschool through 6th grade.
She loves spending time with her family and making great memories with them.
Her favorite Habit is Synergy. She has always believed that a classroom is like a sports team and that everyone has a special part to play on the team. She also believes that cooperation and respect are essential tools on this team.
First job: bagger at a grocery store
Favorite snack: pretzels and popcorn
Favorite book series: Magic Tree House
Alma Mater: Grand Valley State University
Meet Mr. Marty! Mr. Marty has been a part of the IAC team for six years and fills the integral role of Point Person as the leader for the school! We couldn’t all do what we do without him! One thing that Mr. Marty couldn’t live without are his animals.
Mr. Marty’s favorite 7 Habit is think win-win because it is important to consider everyone’s different perspectives. Mr. Marty wants all students to know, “There is so much out there and time moves too quickly. Live each moment to the fullest!”
Life theme song: You’ve Got a Friend
Pirate name: Captain Too Much
Bucket list item: Visit Alaska
Favorite book: Star Girl
Meet Ms. Sara! In grade school, Ms. Sara was a social butterfly, but also a rule follower. She continues to be a social butterfly while also following the rules as she takes care of all our Human Resource needs!
Ms. Sara’s favorite habit is “Seek first to understand, then to be Understood.” She believes it is great to focus on understanding others’ point of view before expressing one’s own point of view. Ms. Sara would like all the students to know…”You are capable of great things in your life. Make good choices, move on from your mistakes and you will be capable of anything you set your sights on!”
Can’t Live Without: Lipstick
Special Talent: Plays the piano
Favorite snack: Chocolate, lots of chocolate
Favorite book: The Secret Garden
Meet Mr. Dave! Mr. Dave has traveled all over the world to Russia, Greece, Spain, Italy, Estonia, Sweden, Finland, Germany, France, Denmark, Norway and Turkey, but thankfully ended up in Michigan to be in charge of IES Finances. Mr. Dave’s life motto is to be humble and kind and he has kindly been a part of our IES family the last four years.
Mr. Dave’s favorite habit is to begin with the end in mind. He also wants our students to know “Be yourself and you can be anything.”
Favorite Snack: Popcorn
Can’t live without: Coffee in the morning
Bucket List: To be a street performer
Special Talent: Plays the organ
Meet Ms. Heidi! Ms. Heidi is the Boss and Queen bee as she does it all for all three IES Schools. She does the registrar, pupil accounting, the front desk and countless other tasks for our schools.
Ms. Heidi wants all the students to know that “You are capable of great things in your life. Make good choices, move on from your mistakes and you will be capable of anything you set your sights on!”
First job: Grocery store cashier
Favorite snack: Doritos
Can’t Live without: Her husband & kids
Quote to live by: “Life is all about the choices you make”