• Position: Professor
  • Department: English Language & Literature
  • Campus Address: Anspach Hall 209
  • Phone: (989) 774-3146
  • Email: griff2sc@cmich.edu

Teaching Expertise

  • Literature for Children and Young Adults (English 381)
  • International Literature for Children and Young Adults (English 481)
  • Poetry for Children and Young Adults (English 485) 
  • Cultural Pluralism in Children's Literature (English 582)
  • Writing in Elementary and Middle Schools (eEnglish 315
  • Seminar in Children’s Literature (English 681)

Research Interests

  • Creative Arts in Learning
  • Social Justice Themes in Children's Literature
  • The Life and Legacy of Jane Addams
  • Role of Reflection in Teaching
  • Writing in the Elementary & Middle School


  • Ph.D., Lesley University, 2001
  • M.A., University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1978
  • B.S. in Ed. Central Michigan University, 1973


  • "Story and the Possibilities of Imagination: Addams' Legacy and the Jane Addams Children's Book Award." In Schaafsma, David, ed. Jane Addams in the Classroom.  Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 2014.
  • The Jane Addams Children's Book Award: Honoring Children's Literature for Peace and Social Justice since 1953.  Lanham, NJ: Scarecrow Press, 2013.
  • "So the Very Young Know and Understand:  Reframing the Discussion of Theodore Taylor's The Cay." The Horn Book Magazine, September/October 2012, vol. 87, no. 5, pp.27-31.
  • “Jane Addams, Stories and Imagination: A Model for Approaching Social Justice Literature with Young People.” Language Arts: The Journal of the Elementary Section of the National Council of Teachers of English. May 2009.
  • "Bringing What is Hidden to Light: Jane Addams and the 2006 Jane Addams Children's Book Award." The Looking Glass: New Perspectives in Children's Literature. Vol. 10 No. 3 September 2006 Available at: http://www.the-looking-glass.net/
  • “Under Construction: A Model of Best (Next Step) Practice.” With Jennifer A. Jones. Language Arts Journal of Michigan, Winter 2006.
  • “Children and Bread in Time of War.” The Looking Glass: New Perspectives on Children’s Books, vol. 9, no. 2, 2 April, 2005. Available at: http://www.the-looking-glass.net/
  • ”Imagining Peace and Social Justice: The Jane Addams Children’s Book Award.” With Donna Barkman. BookLinks, vol. 14, no. 4, March 2005.
  • “Imagining Peace and Social Justice in a World Community: The Jane Addams Children’s Book Award.” WILLA (Women in Literacy and Life Assembly), vol. XIII, 2004, pp. 33-40.
  • "Building on Students' Experiences in Teacher Education," Academic Exchange Quarterly 7:3 (Fall 2003)
  • "Writing Stories: Advice (and More) from a Writer," The Primer: The Journal of the Massachusetts Reading Association 26.2:1997
  • "Powerful, Positive Realistic Fiction for Young Adults." The Young Reader IX.2 (Spring 1995)
  • "Nicholasa Mohr." In American Women Writers: A Critical Reference Guide from Colonial Times to the Present 5 supplement, ed. Carol Hurd Green and Mary Grimley Mason. New York: Continuum, 1994.
  • "Small Press Children's Books and Where to Find Them." With Michele A. Seipp. School Library Journal, February 1982.
  • "The Women's Suffrage Movement in Children's Books." With Donna Barkman. Interracial Books for Children Bulletin, Vol. 13, no. 1, 1982.

Community and Literacy Activities

Scholar and Discussion Leader, PRIME TIME Family Reading (http://primetimefamily.org) Veteran's Memorial Library, Chippewa River District Library, Mt Pleasant Michigan, 2013-2015.