Dr. Curwen earned her Ph.D. in Literacy, Language, and Learning from the University of Southern California Rossier School of Education. As a current literacy researcher and a former classroom teacher and reading specialist, she brings her expertise into her teaching of undergraduate and graduate courses in literacy, language arts, children’s literature, and teaching methods. Her current research interests include systems thinking pedagogy, literacy as a social practice, literacy interventions, systemic sustainability education, and inclusive schooling. She has published in top journals including Frontiers in Education: Teacher Education, Journal of Literacy Research, Journal of Adult & Adolescent Literacy, Journal of Language and Literacy Education, Reading Teacher, Issues in Teacher Education, and Urban Education.
Dr. Curwen holds a multiple subject teaching credential with training in Cross-cultural Language and Development (CLAD) strategies. She taught first grade in a public elementary school in Southern California. As a certified Reading Recovery teacher, she provided literacy intervention for first grade students for several years, later becoming a school site literacy specialist and coach. Throughout these years, she provided professional development in language arts and math and conducted family workshops.
Curwen, M., & Ardell, A. (April 2019). “It’s good because it makes you change”: Children’s and Teachers’ Responses to a Systems Thinking Curriculum. American Educational Research Association, Toronto, Canada.
Curwen, M. S., Ardell, A., & MacGillivray, L. (2018). Hopeful Discourse: Elementary Children’s Activism Grounded in Dialogic Systems Thinking. LRA, Indian Wells, CA.
Curwen, M. S., Ardell, A., & MacGillivray, L. (2018). “Observers of the world”: Primary Grade Students Imagining Solutions to Broken Social and Environmental Systems. American Educational Research Association, New York.
Ardell, A., Curwen, M. S., & MacGillivray, L. (2017, December). Extending consciousness through text, dialogue, and documentation: Systems thinking in a second grade classroom of emerging English Learners. Literacy Research Association, Tampa, FL.
Curwen, M. S., Ardell, A., & MacGillivray, L. (2017). Elementary Students Using Systems Thinking to Interrupt Modern Day Slavery. AERA, San Antonio, TX.
Howard, K., Curwen, M., Howard, N., Colón-Muñiz, A., & Monzó, L. (2017, April). Independent Learning Center: Mixed Methodology Study. AERA, San Antonio, TX.
Ardell, A., Curwen, M. S., & MacGillivray, L. (2016). Kindness and Slavery: Examining, Identifying, and Disrupting Systems. Literacy Research Association, Nashville, TN.
Curwen, M. S., Ardell, A., & MacGillivray, L. (2016, April). Primary grade teachers and students incorporating systems thinking in the curriculum to address a statewide drought. American Educational Research Association, Washington, D.C.
Ardell, A., Curwen, M. S., White-Smith, K., & MacGillivray, L. (2016). “Like a shot in the arm”: Systems thinking professional development as dialogic learning. American Educational Research Association, Washington, D.C.
Brenner, D., Lycke, K., Crumpler, T., Curwen, M. S., & Slater, L. (2015). “Prepared for the metropolis, teaching in the country: Conversations on Rural Literacy Teacher Education. Literacy Research Association, Carlsbad, CA.
Ardell, A., Curwen, M. S., & MacGillivray, L. (2015). “And then what?’ and “So what?’ an “Now what?”: Elementary teachers’ experiences learning to use systems thinking to plan literacy curriculum. Literacy Research Association, Carlsbad, CA.
Curwen, M. S., MacGillivray, L., & Ardell, A. (2015, April). “I never saw nobody read”: Mothers in a homeless shelter share literacy practices and aspirations for children. American Educational Research Association, Chicago, IL.
Curwen, M. S. (2014, Dec). “It was from my hard work”: Developing elementary-student authors in an after-school literacy tutoring program. LRA, Marco Island, Florida.