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Erika Dawes

Associate Provost for Education

Professor Erika Dawes in her office

Erika Thulin Dawes is chair of the Language and Literacy Department and Professor of Language and Literacy in the Graduate School of Education at Lesley University. Erika also serves as the program director of the graduate Early Childhood Education program. 

A former elementary classroom teacher, reading specialist, and district literacy administrator, Erika now teaches and mentors courses in early childhood literacy, children's literature, and elementary literacy methods. Prior to Lesley, Erika taught literacy methods courses at Teachers College, Columbia University.

Along with Mary Ann Cappiello, she is the co-author of Teaching with Text Sets (Shell, 2012) and Teaching to Complexity: A Framework for Evaluating Literary and Content-Area Texts (Shell, 2014) and a forthcoming book with Stenhouse Publishers in 2019. She is a co-author of a book on writing instruction, Learning to Write with Purpose: Effective Instruction in Grades 4-8 (2009), and the author of ancillary materials for the well-established textbook Charlotte Huck's Children's Literature, now in its tenth edition, authored by her mentor Dr. Barbara Kiefer. In 2016, Erika was appointed chair of the Charlotte Huck Award for Outstanding Fiction for Children committee of the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE), for a two-year term.

She blogs about children's and young adult literature currently at "The Classroom Bookshelf," and reviews children's and middle grade books for Language Arts.


BA, University of Massachusetts, Amherst
M.Ed., Lesley University
Ed.D., Columbia University Teachers College

Selected Publications

  • Cappiello, M.A., & Dawes, E.T. (2015). Teaching to complexity.  Huntington Beach, CA, Shell Educational Publishing.
  • Cappiello, M.A., & Dawes, E.T. (2012). Teaching with text sets. Huntington Beach, CA, Shell Educational Publishing.
  • Cappiello, M.A., Dawes, E.T. Enriquez, G., and Roach, J. (2011). Children's literature reviews: The right not to defend your tastes. Language Arts. 88, 3. pgs. 244-249.
  • Allan, K.K., McMackin, M., Thulin Dawes, E. and Spadorcia-Levesque, S., (2009). Learning to Write with Purpose: Effective Instruction in Grades 4-8. New York: Guilford.
  • Thulin Dawes, E. (2008). 2007 children's literature award winners: A classroom response guide. New York: McGraw-Hill.
  • Thulin Dawes, E. (2007). Constructing reading: Building conceptions of literacy in a volunteer read-aloud program. Language Arts 85, 1. pgs. 11-19.