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Testimonials

Here is what some of our parents and former students have to say! If you would like to personally speak to any of our parents, please contact Eva Goldstein-Meola at eva@opententacademy.com and she would be happy to make arrangements for you!

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I wanted to give a “shout out” to Open Tent Academy! My son, age 10, is taking “How Did They Think of That” with Penina Taylor and LOVES it. All the students in the class tell Penina each week it is their favorite class. It is nice to see my son so excited for the class. Online classes may seem expensive; however, once you see the technology that OTA uses and how much your child will learn, you will see how it is worth it at the end. Kudos OTA!

~ M.K., Ohio

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I will never forget our daughter’s excitement as she watched one of Mr. Jonathan’s required documentaries and couldn’t believe she recognized and knew all of the names and places.

History is not a strong suit for our girl, and for her to show a passion for World War I is remarkable. The choice of reading assignments, videos and documentaries all parlayed well into a comprehensive history course. We have truly enjoyed Mr. Jonathan’s teaching style and desire to bring the past alive and look forward to taking another class with him next semester.

~L.R., Florida

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A-M-A-Z-I-N-G teacher. My children and I highly recommend anything that Lindsey Nelson teaches.  Lindsey is a brilliant engineer, that takes knowledge and offers it to children in a unique, memorable and educational format.  Lindsey can relate to children in a manner that is amazing.  If a student wants to go into a topic deeper, Lindsey is there; however, Lindsey also respects the students who are comfortable keeping it a simpler level.   Lindsey Nelson supports student ideas and takes kids seriously.  Nelson clearly enjoys working with students.

Building a car from food items is an interesting challenge that capitalizes on children’s innate understanding of materials – think spaghetti noodles before and after cooking. It truly gets engages problem-solving skills and hands on followed with demonstration and explanation makes for deep, but fun, learning.  If you have a budding engineering, Lindsey Nelson’s classes are perfect for them!

~L.D., Texas

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My daughter and I are both impressed with the variety of class that Open Tent Academy offers. This year she took “Ideas That Changed the World”! My daughter is loving this class, especially the mind mapping technique for homework.

In addition, she is in her second semester of “You Can’t Stop Them”, a literature class with strong female characters taught by Ms. Eva! The loves the creative projects, choices offered and discussions on the novels that they read.

She and I both LOVE Open Tent Academy. I know that she is getting a great education, and she likes that she is having fun learning! She loves the projects that the teachers assign. Open Tent Academy is awesome!

~S.M., California

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I hesitated long and hard about Open Tent Academy and my only regret is not trying it sooner. Both of my kiddoes are taking math and writing classes. These classes are truly a gift. The math teachers are comprehensive and patient. Ms. Eva might be a tough writing teacher; however, she is fair and loves the children and her work.

~T.S.C., New York

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Just a quick note to thank you for a wonderful class! I was a little apprehensive that Cyrus and Ellis would balk at taking an American Girl themed class, but they thoroughly enjoyed your class and never once mentioned that it was girl-centric. Your combination of American history, geography, culture and reading was perfectly balanced. Well done!

~ AKH – Northern Virginia

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My children enjoyed Jessica Elkins’ Quick Recall: Quiz Bowl Trivia class immensely.  Ms. Elkins has a friendly, enthusiastic approach to teaching.  In fact, she seems to enjoy herself as much as the “kid-geeks”.   All the students had a chance to contribute and there was quite a bit of banter between the participants.  Ms. Elkins handled the class skillfully so that not one person dominated it and didn’t get “off track.”    As a parent observer, I couldn’t have been more pleased.

~ M.N., Florida

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Mrs. Penina, instructor for How Did They Think of That, is not only interesting but nice.   In the class, we learn about the history behind many inventions and how they came about.   Finally, Ms. Penina never yells at us.

S.K. (Elementary Student), Utah

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I can’t say enough about Ms. Geula! She worked her magic on our daughter, who originally took art history to “check the box” for her high school fine arts elective. Ms. Geula’s passion for art and art history readily comes through each live online class.

What makes this class even more special is the fact that each student not only learned about various artists and styles of art, but then had to actually get out the paints and canvases to give it a whirl! The hands-on component to this class really brought each artist alive for the students and generated deep respect for those who have a special gift for creating renowned masterpieces.

~L.R., Florida

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I would like to say thank you. Laura is so inspired by OTA’s Lights! Camera! Action! class. She WANTS to improve. Instead of shying away from the writing process that she finds so difficult she is putting her heart and soul into trying. I am seeing improvement and I am seeing enthusiasm that just were not there before. You have no idea how joyful that makes me. This latest essay was really, really hard but a bit less overwhelming than the prior two. Slowly the elements that Laura is learning in class are sinking in. I appreciate all that you do for the class! Thank you!

~ J.C. – Vermont

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“During the process, they might not like me; however, I know when they arrive in college they will thank me.” (Eva Goldstein-Meola)

This is one thing that makes you a good teacher and the reason that I will ALWAYS enroll my upper elementary/middle/high school students in a writing class taught by someone else! They need someone that is hard on them that is not also tucking them in at night! I appreciate your rigorous grading and emphasis on learning and progress. I keep telling my boys… if you were getting 100%, I would need to sign you up for the class. Thank you for pouring your heart and soul into every lesson, Eva.

~A.S. – Maryland

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During our family new year’s celebration, everyone completed a year-in-review questionnaire. One question asked, “What are you most proud of in 2017?” Without hesitation, our daughter blurted out “I learned to write a five-paragraph essay!”

Our daughter, who up until this past semester would only write science lab reports, should be proud of this accomplishment. She willingly dedicated days to completing required essays, and we owe this success to Ms. Eva.

Ms. Eva’s enthusiasm, instruction, encouragement and feedback all generated a newfound level of confidence within our daughter. Plus, the course spurred everyone in our family (including grandparents) to watch incredible movies, which normally would not be in our Netflix queue. Ms. Eva’s impact reached beyond our daughter.

~ L.R., Florida

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We are thrilled to have placed so many courses in the hands of OTA’s professionals. We’ve been homeschooling for eight years and outsource the majority of our classes, so we know a thing or two about live online classes! The flow of information was timely and thorough. When questions arose, we always received a prompt and comprehensive response. In terms of technology, Canvas worked very well; we had no issues or problems accessing Canvas or signing into the live classes. Course content was appropriate and on-grade for each class. Teachers were professional and engaging with a clear desire to share their passions. Without hesitation, I recommend OTA to other homeschool families.

~E.P.K, Virginia

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I am a full time working parent, who was looking for a homeschool consortium that included live lessons (as well as recording them), qualified teachers, and would be proactive with their communication with any of our needs. Open Tent Academy fit everything we needed as a family and more! We are so thankful to be a part of this wonderful academy.

~ S.S., Indiana

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My daughter, Anna has really benefited from and loved Margie Mascolino’s Fractions, Decimals, Percents class. We LOVE that she has a real, live teacher every week. Most online math offerings want you to subscribe to an already recorded set of videos! We love the fact that Margie makes a personal connection with each student. Anna totally loves Margie! The world of online education feels so cold and impersonal as a whole, but OTA is SO different.

~C.B., Virginia

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I just wanted you to know that Laura and I were discussing classes for next year. I was thinking that she would “take a break” from your writing class for one year and then return for the high school classes; however, Laura insisted, “Absolutely not. I learn so much from Eva. Not only about writing; but about how to be a better person. Eva expects excellence out of us in all areas of life.”

Laura truly enjoys all that you bring to the class, your energy, humor, and all that you teach. She has learned so very much from you and I know you have her highest respect along with mine. Personally, I am a terrible writer. Laura loves to write; however, that was not always the case. Without your instruction, I cannot even imagine the quality of her work. I thank you so much for everything. I am so glad I met you years ago in NJ at ENOCH. You have changed my daughter’s life for the better!

~M.S., New Jersey

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I enrolled my eighth-grade son in Middle School Writing at the last minute this past year. Anyone who has had to deal with 12-13-14 year-old boys know how each and every subject can become a power struggle! With my fourth son, writing was “our” struggle. At this point, I knew I needed help!

Eva’s classes and the ability to watch them over or on your own time have been helpful. I left my son to his own devices with this class because I was done arguing, nagging and cajoling. He was surprised and shocked when his papers did not meet up with Mrs. Goldstein-Meola’s approval. Secretly, I have been secretly cheering her because she was not allowing my son off the hook. It’s been a long year but he’s finally getting it. He is following instructions, checking and proofreading his own work and the improvement is amazing. REALLY. AMAZING.

As a parent I love the way this class is structured. I know what is going on and can be as involved or uninvolved (in my case) as I like. The student is given all the information, instructions and examples he needs to do a good job if he chooses. Personally, my son took most of the year to see the light and I have been sitting on my hands and biting my tongue. But . . . he’s finally got it! He has rewritten many of the assignments multiple times until he finally got it right. And, at last, things clicked – follow the directions the first time and poof! No rewrites. Mrs. Goldstein-Meola never waivers in her expectations of excellence. She gives clear instructions and it’s up to the student to follow through. For my son, this class has been a terrific lead-in to high school (and above) level work.

~A.K., Florida

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Minecraft and Architecture taught by Ryan Rasar is my son’s favorite class.  His imagination has been sparked.  I love seeing what he has been able to create every week.  My son spends so much time perfecting his creations.  In addition, he loves giving feedback on the other student’s work.  He is learning so much.  Mr. Rasar really knows how to engage the students.

~ T.K., New York

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My daughter has taken two of Ms. Eva’s IEW writing classes and LOVES them. Ms. Eva’s class structure and teaching style truly makes the process manageable, even for the most reluctant writers. Class notes are provided so that the student can focus on the class content itself. The notes can be reviewed, along with the PowerPoint presentation, before and after class so that the material is familiar. And, as with all the OTA courses, the class is recorded and can be re-watched as many times as needed. Ms. Eva provides constructive feedback in a manner that encourages continuous improvement.

~ C.T., Vermont

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Both my daughters LOVED their creative writing class with Sarina Furer last semester.  Being able to create something unique to them and generate ideas that culminated in something interesting to hear was something that truly sparked their love for writing.  One of my daughters previously had not enjoyed the art of writing; however, after this class she begged to take the second semester.  I would highly recommend this class to any student who has found writing to be dull, full of rules and without energy and excitement.  Here they will learn to enjoy the process of writing and the fruit of their effort

~ T.F., Florida

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My daughter is 9 years old took Lindsey Nelson’s You Can Do It: A Young Engineer’s Guide to Inventing.   Lindsey Nelson encouraged students to ask questions about engineering.  My daughter is shy, so she was nervous to ask questions; however, Lindsey was amazingly patient and respectful of each student giving them the time and space they needed to ask their questions.  Lindsey always answered every question they asked fully.  During the building activities, Lindsey was constructive and encouraging.  Until this day, my daughter continues to tweak her design and looks forward to taking more classes with this teacher.

~J.R., California

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During 2017 – 2018, I have been taking four classes through Open Tent. My two favorite classes are Middle School Writing and ADHD Toolbox. What I really like about the ADHD class is that Ms. Taylor knows how hard it is to learn in school and life. All the tips she tells us really help. In addition, I love Middle School Writing. The best part of MSW is how Ms. Eva teaches and how her comments are so easy to understand. I am so happy to be able to take OTA classes this year. I can’t wait to take more next year.

K.T., Student from Vermont

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Mrs. Mascolino teaches an amazing personal finance class, called CHARGE IT OR NOT!, for 8th-12th graders.

In this class we cover many topics including budgeting, emergency funds, insurance, taxes, debt, giving, and so much more!

As many people know, personal finance skills are crucial when it comes to handling money. Many people don’t learn these skills until they are well into adulthood, and lots of people say, ‘I wish I could’ve learned this when I was in high school!’ Why not learn them early and be prepared before you turn 18? I have learned countless valuable skills in this class that I will use throughout my entire life.

Mrs. Mascolino is an amazing teacher. She takes enough time to cover each topic, is friendly and helpful, and makes sure each of her students understands and participates in whatever we are doing in class. She really creates effective and fun online learning!

I recommend her class 100%.

-B.D., Student from Virginia

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