Instructor Biographies  

In everything set them an example by doing what is good. In your teaching show integrity, seriousness and soundness of speech that cannot be condemned . . .

Titus 2: 7-8




Susan Hammer is a co-founder with Liz Barber of Hands-On Learning Day (HOLD), where she serves as both a program director and teacher.   Susan loves sharing her creative expertise in literature with students of all ages. Her goal is to instill a love for literature in young people, to help them develop the ability to analyze literature, and to inspire them to examine what they read according to biblical principles.  Since 2005 she has been teaching literature to elementary through high school students at Fine Arts Day (FAD), Home Education Enrichment Day (HEED), and Classical Education Day at Riverside (CEDAR).  She served as Director of Children’s Ministry for First Christian Church of Boca Raton from 1996 to 2011, after serving first as a teacher and then as Director of First Christian Preschool beginning in 1987. She has spent over 30 years educating and working with preschool through high school students. She holds an Associate of Arts degree from Northwestern Michigan College and the early childhood development CDA credential.  Susan and her husband David home educated their two daughters from middle school through high school; both daughters were Presidential Scholars and graduated from the Honors Program at FAU with majors in English Literature and Interdisciplinary Studies in Arts & Humanities.  Both daughters have gone on to receive advanced degrees, one is a Speech Language Pathology and one an Attorney.

Joanne Rabolli: Science Instructor in conjunction with the Creation Studies Institute in Fort Lauderdale. Joanne has been teaching Creation Studies Institute’s Elementary Science Program and Middle School Science Program for home-educated students since 2006, and on occasion the After-school Enrichment Science Program. As CSI’s Museum Curator (designer & builder), she has developed the Creation Museum’s workshops that are offered as field trips for schools and for the home education community. Joanne has been a fossil guide for CSI’s Fossil Floats for 12 years and  has conducted workshops during these events. She teaches at CSI’s Super Cool Saturday events, and she also teaches the children’s class during Creation Fellowship Fridays. Joanne has taught the Paleontology summer camp class for CSI for the past several years. She was a 4-H leader for nine years, and also has done public speaking and teaching for 4-H at the county level for the past 13 years. She was an adjunct professor at Palm Beach Community College’s Summer Youth College for four years, where she developed and taught Fossil Exploration and Line & Design. Joanne home educated her three children for a total of 17 years—her son from third grade through high school and her two daughters from Kindergarten through high school, finishing in 2006.

Tarra Gainey: Hands-On Math Instructor, I began assisting at H.O.L.D. in both the literature and science classes in 2018. I am a mother of 2, and I have been home educating my own children for the past 11 years.
Though my own education is focused toward the medical field the Lord has consistently led me to teach, tutor and provide childcare to numerous PreK-5th graders through various volunteer and outreach opportunities over the last 15 years.
I believe every child has the ability to excel in math when we meet them where they are, use techniques that appeal to their learning styles, and teach them with patience, joy, and a servant's heart.
My prayer is that this hands on math enrichment class will help each child to feel confident in the area of math, and prompt them to think both independently and critically while the learn how to problem solve through simple logic, reasoning, application, and game play.
Working with the children at H.O.L.D. brings me tremendous joy, and I cherish my role in supporting our enrolled families in their own homeschooling journey.

Lissette Puentes was born and raised in Florida and has been married to her high school sweetheart, John, for 16 years. She has two beautiful daughters and five fur-babies. The Puentes family has been worshipping and serving at Real Life Church in Coconut Creek, FL for the last 8 years. She is extremely passionate about the arts and all things creative. She believes that as we are made in HIS image, we are also creative beings. She enjoys spending time with her family, painting in her free time, and singing.  Lissette received her BFA from Florida Atlantic University and has her Florida teaching certificate in secondary education art. She taught art at Cooper City High School and served as administrator and teacher at Ridge Manor Christian Academy.