HSLDA Online Academy | Biology


Master Teacher:  Kris Mayo

Dr. Kris Mayo, High School Classroom Teacher for BiologyMaster Teacher

Kris Mayo, DVM

DVM, VA-MD Regional College of Veterinary Medicine
BA, College of William and Mary

Dr. Kris Pelham Mayo is a veterinarian and classical homeschool tutor in the natural sciences. She received a BA in modern languages (German and French) from the College of William and Mary and a DVM (Doctor of Veterinary Medicine) from the Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine at Virginia Tech.

After practicing clinical veterinary medicine and surgery for a number of years, Dr. Mayo joined the faculty at the Community College of Baltimore County as an adjunct professor, where she developed and taught online classes in veterinary technology. She has been homeschooling her 4 children (ranging from elementary school age through high school age) since they were born. Since 2011, she has also been tutoring high school laboratory science classes, including biology, chemistry, and physical science, for a local classical homeschool tutorial.

Dr. Mayo is passionate about helping students learn more about their Creator by studying His creation! Students who enroll in her classes learn more than just science through a Christian worldview. They also learn how to learn. Many high school students can read a textbook, but they often do not really know how to study a textbook. Using classical, trivium-based techniques, her students learn for retention and develop practical study techniques, time management habits, and critical thinking and rhetorical skills that benefit them through high school and beyond.

Dr. Mayo lives on a farm in Bowie, Maryland, with her husband, 4 children, horses, chickens, rabbits, and whatever other animals show up at the farm. She is excited to be teaching knowledge, developing wisdom, and fostering understanding with a Christian worldview at HSLDA Online Academy.

Dr. Mayo has been teaching with the Academy since 2017.

Classroom Teacher:  Noelle Stillman

Noelle Stillman, High School Classroom Teacher for BiologyClassroom Teacher

Noelle Stillman

BS, Florida International University

Noelle Stillman earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Occupational Therapy from Florida International University in Miami in 1999, and practiced in hospital and outpatient settings for several years, eventually specializing in orthopedics and hand therapy. In addition to her Occupational Therapy degree and licensure, Noelle earned Certification as a Birth Doula in 2006, Certification as a Health Coach in 2015, and holds a Certificate of German Language Studies from the Collegium Palatinum in Heidelberg, Germany.

Besides homeschooling her own children, Noelle has been teaching high school classes at a large homeschool co-op for 12 years, and has taught multiple subjects including natural sciences, critical thinking, philosophy, history, literature, and foreign languages. She has also taught science classes at a homeschool hybrid school, taught biology and marine biology classes from her home, and tutored college biology. She is also a published author, and enjoys writing articles for homeschool publications about such topics as learning style and intelligence.

Noelle loves teaching high school students, and enjoys challenging them to think for themselves, to understand why they believe what they believe, and to defend it intelligently and articulately. She is passionate about the Lord and discovering his “fingerprints” which are so evident in creation, and she loves igniting in her students that same passion for learning and for finding the Creator in all things. She hopes to equip students to leave her class better prepared to defend their beliefs in a hostile world, and to shine as bright lights in the darkness!

Noelle has been married to her best friend since 1995, and is a homeschooling mother to their 8 children. She and her family live on a farm in Florida, and raise many types of animals, including horses, Angus beef cows, dairy goats, pigs, turkeys, chickens, peacocks, cats, dogs, a guinea pig, and a rabbit! In her spare time, Noelle enjoys reading, writing, sewing, running, music, camping, and being outdoors with her family. She and her family are active in their church, and lead worship together as a family.

Noelle has been teaching with the Academy since 2017.

Classroom Teacher:  Lilli Ann Miller

Lilli Ann Miller, High School Classroom Teacher for BiologyClassroom Teacher

Lilli Ann Miller

MS, University of Houston
BS, University of the Philippines at Los Baños

Lilli Ann Miller earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Biology with an emphasis in genetics and plant breeding at the University of the Philippines at Los Baños. She served there as an instructor in General Biology and Genetics in the Department of Life Sciences. A Fulbright-Hays travel grant gave her the opportunity to pursue graduate studies in molecular genetics at the University of Houston. While in the master’s program, she worked as a teaching fellow in the Department of Biology and as a research assistant in the Department of Biochemistry.

For the last 20 years, she has been a homeschool mother of five. She has served in leadership roles at homeschool co-ops, coordinated events, and taught classes. She currently teaches high school biology and middle school history in a local co-op. She considers it a privilege to help inspire young minds to love to learn. It is her desire that students learn to appreciate God’s incredible design for life and His amazing wisdom as manifested in every aspect of creation.

Lilli Ann and her husband, Jeff, have been married 30 years and they reside in Houston, Texas. They are blessed with five children, a son-in-law, and a granddaughter.

Lilli Ann has been teaching with the Academy since 2017.  

Classroom Teacher:  Angel Miera

Angel Miera, High School Classroom Teacher for BiologyClassroom Teacher

Angel Miera

MS, Georgetown University
BS, University of New Mexico

Angel Miera earned an undergraduate degree in biology at the University of New Mexico. She earned her master’s degree at Georgetown University in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular & Cellular Biology. Angel has extensive experience conducting independent research and is an experienced seminar speaker and author. She believes that using the scientific method during “hands-on” experimentation is the key to successful discovery. Angel’s passion in the area of science is molecular biology. Angel spent a considerable amount of time using various high-powered microscopes to make discoveries. She absolutely loves to illuminate the intricacies of God’s creation using microscopy!

During her time in the lab, Angel mentored several high school and undergraduate students. She has also taught biology online to undergraduate students. Angel’s favorite aspect of teaching is helping students live up to their God-given potential by presenting subject matter in an interesting way and challenging students to ask questions and dive deep into new material without fear.

In addition to teaching, Angel takes on various projects in the area of outcomes management for various non-profit organizations. Angel lives in Arizona, where she is happily homeschooling her young son. She enjoys traveling, the outdoors, and spending time with her family.

Angel has been teaching with the Academy since 2017. .

Duration: Yearlong course offered in fall/spring (32 weeks).
Suggested High School Credit Value: 1 credit.
Suggested Grade Level: 10th grade level and up.
Early Registration Tuition (ends 6/12): $500 $550 for HSLDA Members/$550 $600 for non-members. 

Description: In Biology, students will learn about life from the cellular level and up from a Young Earth Creationist worldview. Biology at HSLDA Online Academy will include lab work.
Watch a short introduction from Course Developer Dr. Kris Mayo.
Watch a sample clip of an Academy live class session. 

Biology w/Lab — Live Online Class Session Schedule,
August 27, 2018 - April 26, 2019

Class Section

Weekly Meeting Time


Section 1
Tuesdays, 10:00 – 11:30 a.m. Eastern

Mrs. Lilli Ann Miller

Section 2
Tuesdays, 1:30 – 3:00 p.m. Eastern

Mrs. Angel Miera

Section 3
Wednesdays, 10:00–11:30 a.m. Eastern

Mrs. Noelle Stillman

Section 4
Thursdays, 10:00–11:30 a.m. Eastern

Dr. Kris Mayo

Additional class times will be added as they become available for registration. If you have questions, please call 540-338-8290 or email academy@hslda.org.

Frequently Asked Questions about Biology

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  • What topics will I learn about in Biology?

    Students who participate in this college-preparatory Laboratory Biology class will study a detailed introduction to the concepts and methods of general biology through a Christian worldview. Heavily emphasizing the vocabulary of biology, the scope of the course will include the study of:


    • The scientific method
    • The five-kingdom classification scheme
    • Organisms belonging to each of the five kingdoms of living things through microscopy and dissections
    • Cellular biology
    • Biochemistry
    • Molecular biology
    • Mendelian genetics
    • The evidence for creation vs. evolution
    • Ecology
    • A survey of human biology and disease, using a systems approach 


    Students will:


    • Learn how to read, research, and relate to the material through assigned readings and exercises, instruction, discussion, experimentation, microscopy, and dissections.
    • Have the opportunity to participate in hands-on laboratory experiments, maintain a laboratory journal, and prepare formal laboratory reports.  
    • Learn how to learn for retention, and have the opportunity to practice study skills, time management skills, and critical thinking and rhetorical skills throughout the course.  


  • How much homework is in Biology?

    We estimate that the course workload will take 5-10 hours per week.

    During a typical week in this course, students will complete the following coursework:

    Each 2-week module consists of theoretical (week 1) and practical (week 2) components.

    Week 1

    • 60-90 minutes of live class instruction
    • Introductory lecture video
    • 2-4 module lecture videos (20-30 minutes per video)
    • Vocabulary learning and practice
    • 1 chapter textbook reading per 2-week module (~30 pages)
    • Key concepts outline (handwritten or typed

    Week 2

    • Lab experiment lecture videos (optional)
    • 2-4 lab experiments
    • Lab journal or formal lab report (varies by week)
    • Module test

    Throughout the year, students will also complete the following tasks:

    • Midterm exam and final exam
  • What if I have a schedule conflict with listed Biology class times?

    All live class sessions are recorded for later viewing. While it is recommended that students attend each live class session, students can make arrangements to watch the recordings and receive full participation credit.

    Students should contact their instructor at the start of their course to inform the instructor of any foreseen schedule conflicts. 

  • What is a Live Online Class Session in Biology?

    In every HSLDA Academy course, students meet weekly with their instructor and classmates in an online classroom for additional teaching, discussion, Q&A, or group activities. The class sessions are interactive and are conducted using a web meeting software with video, audio, chat, and application sharing capabilities.

    Scheduled, real-time sessions in the online classroom are not the only form of instruction available in a HSLDA Online Academy course, but are offered in addition to lectures or other instructional materials that students are able to access online at their convenience.

    When they register, students will need to select a particular class section and live class meeting time. Additional class sections may be added to the schedule at a later point in the course registration period. Registered students will be notified of any changes to the live session schedule.

  • What is the tuition for Biology?

    Please visit our tuition and discounts page for a full summary about course costs.

    HSLDA members save $50 on yearlong high school courses!

  • Am I ready to take Biology?

    Biology with Lab is designed for students in the 10th grade and above. Students must be able to read and write at a 10th grade level or above. Students do not need laboratory science experience before taking Biology.  

    Although all laboratory experiments are available for viewing by the students, performing the experiments at home with adult supervision is strongly recommended for a broader and deeper learning experience. Please also consult your state's high school graduation requirements, to ensure that your student is completing the work expected of high school students in your state.