Laurie Marshall, M.A.
For 30 years, Laurie Marshall has empowered young people to have a positive impact on negative settings. She is a K-12 certified social studies and art teacher who has worked primarily with underserved youth in rural and urban communities in Virginia, Pennsylvania and California. Her specialty is incorporating project-based learning and arts integration with academic subjects to deeply engage young people.
A graduate of Antioch College, with an M.A. from Beacon College (now the Union Institute), she has authored eight books, 11 plays, and 36 videos. Her book, Beating the Odds Now - Ten Steps for Teachers to Meet the Standards and Still Love What You Do!," is a love letter to teachers, which focuses on the importance of finding the "spark" of each child, using Nature as a model for instruction and structuring real work for young people to do. Her collaborative mural process has been used by thousands of people around the world to envision positive futures, including NASA, the Department of Interior, UNICEF, the Army Corps of Engineers, foster homes, hospices and prisons. She also has written curriculum for IONS’ Worldview Exploration program, “See the Change USA” middle school physics program, “Let’s Create Peace” and the Global Youth Exchange.
Laurie believes that children and adults have a fundamental drive for mastery, autonomy, purpose and connection. She values the important role young people have to play in creating a just and beautiful world, which is why she embraces the work of Community Matters. The Safe School Ambassador Program unleashes the power of students for both individual and school transformation, while supporting adults to nourish the young peace leaders on a regular basis. After her extensive work in public, alternative and Waldorf schools, she is now excited to be training young people to make a difference with the Community Matters practice.