Ivy has spent decades teaching in after school programs with the aim to offer elements of education that are too often excluded from the regular school day curriculum.
She received a degree in Education with a minor in Creative Writing from the New School for Social Research in Manhattan, where she absorbed the teachings of thinkers such as Paolo Freire, bell hooks, Carol Gilligan, Drucilla Cornell, Kimberlé Williams Crenshaw, Myles Horton, and a host of radical education pioneers who steadfastly developed methodologies and student-centered learning techniques. She also began a Masters Degree Program in Cultural Anthropology and Social Transformation at CIIS, where she learned about Participatory Action Research Methods that now inform her work.
Ivy employs the power of small group work to usher communities towards a safer world for girls, women, and people of all gender identities and expressions to do their work and to walk without fear in freedom, creativity and love.
Girls Sit Screaming
Screening the “Girls Sit Screaming” music video in middle schools, high schools, libraries and community centers around the country has been a dream come true for me, as Youth Development, Girls' Empowerment, Community Organizing & Music have been my passions for the last 20 years, and through this project, they all come together under one umbrella!
Screening the video serves as a catalyst for conversations about how to foster girls’ empowerment and gender equity and create community-specific after school programs.
Keepers of wonder
After years of teaching after-school programs designed to foster and encourage art, music, literacy, girls’ empowerment, yoga, and anti-bullying at well-established after-school organizations like the Boys’ and Girls’ Club and the YMCA, I started organizing youth to invent independent after-school programs that would be custom tailored to their needs as they expressed them.
This is how The Keepers of Wonder was born. As a result of teaching body image and songwriting workshops at the WEB (Women’s Empowerment Breakthrough) Conference in Prescott, Arizona in Yavapai County, I came to understand that it was a community struggling with high numbers of unwanted teen pregnancy and drug abuse. So I organized a town meeting for girls ages 10-17.
Based on the ideas and needs of the girls who showed up, we created The Keepers of Wonder. KOW met weekly after school and collaboratively designed site-specific performances and installations around Prescott with the idea of sparking critical thinking and little glimmers of magic, hope, and wonder in the community.
body image workshops
Who decides what is beautiful and why? These are among the questions I ask young women ages 10-18 to fire up the critical thinking process that is so necessary to move beyond damaging mainstream constructs of beauty.
Since 2003, I have been conducting body image workshops for girls and women in a variety of settings. Using powerful and effective experiential activities and small group work, I aim to cultivate creative critical thought and profound self-love to move beyond limiting standards of beauty in order to forge ahead and create a world in which girls and women are not objectified, but rather respected, heard, believed, and valued for their unique contributions. I imagine a world in which we all can find refuge from harmful images and practices in mainstream media within a culture of vibrant and caring adults who embody self-love and acceptance.