Phone: 520-269-4646


Degrees and Certifications:

*BA Psychology, University of Arizona *Masters degree in Elementary Education, University of Phoenix *Gifted Endorsement *Early Childhood Endorsement *SEI Endorsement

Ms. Lori LaRussa

Image result for i love second grade         Image result for second grade rocks



Welcome to Second Grade!  We are in Learning Lab 16.

Hi!  My name is Lori LaRussa. I am so excited to teach at Innovation Academy family! I am an alumni of Amphitheater school district.  I went to Copper Creek Elementary, Coronado Middle School and I graduated from C.D.O!  I have lived in northwest Tucson since I was 8 years old.  I always knew that I would be a teacher and I am so excited to be teaching in the district that I grew up in.

I have taught kindergarten through second grade since 2003!  I am so lucky to have been teaching at Innovation Academy since 2018.  I love children and teaching. I wake up in the morning excited about going to work! Teaching is definitely more of a passion for me than a job.  I have a Masters degree in Elementary Education and a B.A. in Psychology. I have an endorsement in Gifted Education, Early Childhood education and teaching English as a second language.  I love to teach STEM and project-based learning. I am very passionate about giving my students problem-solving skills and providing them with many opportunities to collaborate and use open-ended thinking.  I have also been coaching and coordinating the Odyssey of the Mind program for most of my career. I believe it is so valuable to teach kids creative problem solving skills and how to apply those skills to real life.

 I believe that elementary age is the most important time to instill a love of learning in every student, and I strive to make school a very positive experience for every child. My goal is to ignite a passion for a lifetime of learning.  I like to make learning fun and relevant for every student.  I believe the teacher-student relationship is very important.  I make it my mission to get to know each of my students individually. This is my favorite part of my job!  I find that having a strong positive relationship with everyone of my students is critical to maximizing learning.


 Parent volunteers are always welcome - cutting, stapling, working one on one with children, or becoming an even more active part of our classroom. I appreciate being partners with you in the education of your child. I believe that communication between the classroom and home is critical, so please always feel free to email me with any questions or comments you may have.

I am looking forward to another fantastic year!