Shawn holds a BS in Early Childhood Education from the University of Cincinnati, and a MEd in Montessori Education from Xavier University. She spent many years writing at Women Writing for (a) Change, an independent writing school in Cincinnati, and taught their young women’s classes.

She taught preprimary children at The New School Montessori in Cincinnati for most of her 24-year career. The children whose stories she continues to record there, and her grandchildren, inspire her own writing, both personal and professional.