Welcome to hockeywise.org

A beautifully unique homeschool tutorial



Dear Hockey-Wise Families:

It comes with disappointment to let you all know that we will be postposing Hockey-Wise classes until August of 2020.  Due to our own personal hockey schedules, every member of our family will be in a different city for this upcoming school year.  We've made great efforts to try to have enough coaches and teachers to continue the program while Saul is away, but found that the program itself would suffer, and we refuse to let that happen.  So after much discussion and deliberation, our decision is to re-start Hockey-Wise in August of 2020.  All of you on this list will be emailed next spring/summer in regards to enrollment for the fall of 2020.

On a positive note, this is only a temporary pause, and based on conversations that we are already having, the program will come back stronger than ever in 2020. We know that this program means a lot to many of you, and we don’t take this decision lightly.  We want to ensure that it’s always a productive and positive place for our kids to be, and we couldn’t ensure that without Saul’s presence.  Hockey-Wise is a labor of love, and it means a lot to us as well, which makes this pause difficult for us.  We love each child who has come through our doors, and we will continue to think of them as we plan for next year.  

All the best,

Saul & Nicole Zonana

Find out more


Our Mission


Hockey-Wise is a unique homeschool tutorial that is a wonderful opportunity for homeschooled hockey players to further their academic education while improving their skills at the best sport in the world - hockey.  From beginners to advanced players, this program will take your skills to the next level. And it is equally important to us that students gain knowledge in various academic and enrichment subjects.This all happens in a fun group classroom setting.

 Students are then coached on ice by world-class professional hockey coaches.  Hockey-Wise is a tutorial program that brings students together. They gain knowledge together. They improve their hockey skills together. They form lifelong friendships. All in a structured environment. Hockey-Wise homeschool takes place at the premier training facility in Franklin TN, THE LAB. 


What We Do



Our tutorial meets once a week on Thursdays, from 9:45 am -3:00 pm, from August through May. There are two semesters. Fall semester is August through December. Spring Semester is January through May. We are geared toward students aged 9 through 14 years old.  Students will be led through course work in a combination of lecture and lab learning, with an emphasis on discussion and collaboration.  We believe that an interactive environment leads to more hands-on learning that stays with a student for life.  We also believe that not every student learns the same way, and we are aware that not every student is in the same grade.  By keeping our classes relatively small, we are able to spend the time needed with each individual student to ensure that learning is truly taking place on their level.  During their school day, students put on their hockey gear and spend 90 minutes on ice with various professional hockey coaches.  The passion that is delivered in the coaching at the Lab is matched nowhere else in Tennessee.  Your student will gain knowledge and improve their hockey skills, and you will notice.  

Who We Are



Hockey-Wise is owned and operated by homeschooling parents, hockey parents and educators, Nicole and Saul Zonana. 

All Hockey-Wise courses are taught by professionals in their fields and paid educators. 

Hockey-Wise on ice coaches are all paid professional hockey coaches. 

We take great pride in our involvement with our educators and coaches. The motivation is always to make better students and players out of these super awesome kids. 

All levels of players from beginners to advanced are welcome! 

And yes, GOALIES are welcome! 

We have goalie coaches as well.

Please see our current roster of instructors below.                                                                                                  Update: We now offer camps and programs for all ages in addition to our homeschool program. Check them at: https://hockeywise.org/hockey-wise-presents




-music history

-basic musical instrument instruction

-basic music theory

-critical listening

Life Skills for the Athlete


-habits and attitudes of a champion

-goal setting

-overcoming doubts

-avoiding short cuts 


-moral victors and integrity

-bully prevention

-sports leadership

Modern Technology


-history of technology

-technology today

-discussions on how technology can be helpful

Sports History


-The history of hockey

-Researching and studying of the most successful athletes in history 

-An Interview with a professional hockey player

Basic Anatomy and Motion for the Athlete


-How the skeletal system works

-How the muscular system works

-Muscle action and movement 

-Lecture and lab formats 




-Core strength

-Mental focus


-Strength of underused muscle groups


-Balance of body and mind



-How to use a REAL movie camera

-Intro to Adobe Premier for beginners

-Basics of movie making

Biology of Sports Performance


-nutrition for athletes  

-the science behind sports performance  



-game success  


Creative Writing


-Learn to create stories and characters that are as real on paper as they are in the mind. 

-Provide settings and create plots that will entice and inspire readers. 

-Learn the art of the Interview



-Painting on Canvas


-Balloon Art

Class Instructors

Nicole Zonana


 Nicole is a Registered Occupational Therapist and a Certified Children's Yoga Instructor who has worked with children throughout her entire twenty-year career.  She holds a Bachelors Degree in Health Sciences and a Masters Degree in Occupational Therapy, with a specialization in pediatrics. Nicole’s experience is vast, working for the past 10 years in the educational setting.  This experience has given her a depth of understanding of children’s different learning styles, and how to instruct them.  As a certified Yoga instructor, Nicole frequently teaches yoga classes to our students at Hockey-Wise, helping students to work on stretching and strengthening.  

That is priceless for our Hockey-Wise program.

Phillip Lacy


The students are in for such a treat on days that Mr. Lacy is teaching his class. He has inspired many! Phillip has taught cinematography, film production, animation, and screenwriting in Miami as well as in the Mid-West. Since the mid 2013’s Phillip has been the associate chair or director of the Art Institute of Tennessee-Nashville’s Media Arts department over the film/video, audio, photgraphy, animation, and visual effects programs. He loves making films and teaching filmaking to students of all ages.  Scroll down to our "Happy Pucks" Video that Mr. Lacy created with our students.

Tori Williams


Tori is a licensed Physical Therapist.  She graduated from Louisiana State University with a Bachelors of Science in Psychology, and then went on to earn her Masters of Physical Therapy from University of Findlay.  She has a wealth of experience in her field, including extensive work with children in the outpatient and rehab settings in neurology and orthopedics.  Tori holds a specialty certification in aquatic rehabilitation, kinesiotaping, and soft tissue mobilization. She is perfect for explaining the basic anatomy and motion of the young athlete to our students. Tori has five years of homeschooling experience, teaching her two hockey player sons.  

Saul Zonana


Saul is a lifelong touring musician, composer, and artist who has 35+ years in the music business and has toured with some of the biggest names in music. His music has been on television shows and films over the past 25 years, and his fan base continues to grow. 

Beyond that, he is an award-winning educator with a passion for teaching.  Saul has been teaching at the college level at the Art Institute of Tennessee for the past nine years, as well as instructing young students in the area of music and technology. He excels at communicating with his students in a way that is both inspiring and motivating.  AND, he's a hockey dad :) 

The students LOVE learning about music and many other topics with Mr. Z!  www.saulz.net

Dan Klepper


 Dan Klepper

Dan was born in Somerset, Kentucky.  He always had an interest in various forms of art and possessed a creative mind as a child.  Dan’s creative outlet as an adult became photography, which led to a move to Nashville in 1984 and a career as a professional photographer.  In 2004, Dan shifted his focus to painting, attending many artist workshops to learn technique, composition, design, contrast, and use of color.  He learned that, “Every painting is a chance to learn and grow as an artist.”  Dan’s classes at Hockey-Wise include painting, and many other art classes.  

The students have an awesome time participating and always love when Mr. Dan is teaching that day.

Hockey Coaches

Allie LaCombe


Growing up in Minnesota, Allie attended Eden Prairie high school where she played hockey all four years. In 2015 she graduated from Syracuse University where she also played for their DI women’s team, breaking several records, one of them being the faceoff percentage leader for NCAA of the 2014-2015 season. The following 2015-2016 season, Allie played professionally overseas for the Vienna Sabres of the EWHL in Vienna, Austria, with her team winning the national trophy, league championship and league Super Cup. Allie is the current Head Coach of the Nashville Girls Hockey U19 travel program. Her coaching background includes numerous teams and students in Minnesota, Austria, New York, Florida and more. Allie's life motto is "practice, determination and desire" and uses that in every day life, in coaching, teaching, and playing as well. She is a super inspiring coach and she's here to help the Nashville hockey community. 

Patrick Murray



Born in Rochester, NY, Patrick spent 17 years playing with the Webster Cyclones Travel Hockey Program. He also played four years of high school hockey followed by one year of Junior A hockey in Syracuse, NY. Following his year in Syracuse, he attended the State University of New York at Canton where he played four more years of Division III Club hockey and served as the program's president for his junior and senior seasons. After stints of working with the Rochester Americans (AHL) and the Nashville Predators, Patrick now focuses on using his knowledge and experience with previous hockey organizations to train and teach players of any age to help them improve and play at the next level. His up-tempo coaching style pushes his players to elevate their work ethic and motivate themselves to give their best effort. Patrick's coaching experience comes from serving as an assistant coach for his hometown high school team, various hockey camps in the Rochester, NY area, and programs within the Nashville Predators Youth Hockey department. Patrick is currently a skills coach for the Lab in Franklin, TN. Most recently, he has developed his own training program by the name of K&P Hockey Training, designed to work with travel level hockey players from ages 10-17 on off-ice strength and skill, as well as, on-ice. Patrick will be the head coach of the 10U Preds Select team for the 2018-19 season.




Dillon Caffrey is from Mount Juliet, TN and has been involved with hockey since he was nine years old. Most people in Nashville refer to him as "Goose". 

Dillon is currently the Nashville Predators Emergency Backup Goalie and has a background in Goaltending playing and coaching. He played AAA in Nashville for the Southern Flyers growing up and went on to play goaltender and defenseman for the Glacier Nationals in the NA3HL in juniors. 

Currently, Goose works for numerous renowned goalie camps. He is the Nashville Coordinator for Mitch Korn's goalie school (Mitch is the NHL Goaltending Coach for the Washington Capitals). Dillon also runs camps internationally; he helps with Steve Briere of the Toronto Maple Leafs NHL team, Player's Edge, and numerous other goalie schools. Goose is also a Level 5 USA Hockey Coach. 

Dillon attended the University of Tennessee Chattanooga and graduated with a degree in Marketing and Sports and Human Performance. He continues to coach by helping high school teams, girls programs, giving private lessons and working as the Goaltending Coach at Breakaway. In his free time, Goose enjoys skating out in Open Hockey, working on cars and traveling to new places. It's a pleasure to have him coach at our HockeyWise Homeschool program.


Tuition for Hockey-Wise

Non-refundable one-time registration fee of $45

Single semester enrollment: $790 (15 Thursdays)

Full year enrollment: $1399 (30 Thursdays)

20% off of these prices for each additional sibling enrolled.

This includes two 75 minute classes each day, and 75 to 90 minutes of on ice instruction with world-class coaches.  Please read and sign our Policies/Code of Conduct form (below)


HockeyWise homeschool Video Class Presents:  "HAPPY PUCKS"


THE LAB - 547 Mount Hope St, Franklin, Tennessee 37064

Saul Z (914) 610-5342


Thursdays 9:45 am to 3pm


Before enrolling please download AND READ the FEE POLICY and CODE OF CONDUCT FORM. 

This form will need to be signed and handed in.

Former Nashville Pred, Eric Nystrom talks to our students