Elizabeth Goodenough

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Liz Goodenough

Lecturer, Arts and Ideas in the Humanities Program

Office Location(s): B829 East Quad
Phone: 734.647.4349
Faculty Website
Where Do Children Play?

  • About


    Elizabeth Goodenough received an MAT and PhD from Harvard University and has taught at Harvard, Claremont McKenna, Sarah Lawrence College, and the University of Michigan’s Residential College, School of Education, and School of Information. She established the Landscapes of Childhood at Wayne State University Press and is widely published  in the field of Childhood Studies.

    With Mark Heberle and Naomi Sokoloff she co-edited Infant Tongues: The Voice of the Child in Literature (1994) and with Mitzi Myers a special issue of The Lion & the Unicorn on Children's Literature and Violence (2000). She helped produce the award-winning PBS documentary, Where Do the Children Play? plus companion volumes:  A Study Guide to the Film (WSUP, 2007) and A Place for Play (National Institute for Play, 2008). Other books include Secret Spaces of Childhood (U of Michigan Press, 2003) and Under Fire: Childhood in the Shadow of War (WSUP, 2008). Seeking to bring children’s books into wider spheres of critical awareness, she also guest-edited two issues of Encounter: Education for Meaning and Social Justice and published “The Healing Arts of Play: Scenes of Self-Determination in Hawthorne’s Biographical Stories” (Nathaniel Hawthorne Review, 2010). As Fellow of the Society for Values in Higher Education and assistant editor of The Michigan Quarterly Review, she was elected by the membership of the Children's Literature Association to the Critical Book Committee for a three-year term and is now serving on the Phoenix Award Committee.


    "The Healing Arts of Play: Scenes of Self-Determination in Hawthorne’s Biographical Stories for Children. Special Issue. The Nathaniel Hawthorne Review. Spring, 2010.

    "Secrets of Play: Child-Centered Spaces and the Literary Imagination."  Memory and Pedagogy. Eds. Claudia Mitchell, Teresa Strong-Wilson, Kathleen Pithouse and Susann Allnutt. New York: Routledge, 2011.

    "Nature as a Healer." The Wisdom of Nature. Ed. Rachel Sorensen. Ulster, NY: Community Playthings, 2011.

    "Olly Olly Oxen Free", RC News, Fall 2013

    Soundscapes of Childhood (Exhibition Brochure)


    "Play and Taking Risk," InterActivity 2010 Conference, The Association of Children’s Museums, Saint Paul, MN  (May, 2010)

    Co-ordinator of Where Do the Children Play? Events with City of Farmington Hills Department of Special Services, Historical Commissioners, Garden Clubs, Heritage and History Center, Heritage Park Nature Center, Farmington Garden Club, Artists Club, Longacres House and Parks & Recreation: "Farmington: A Community Remembers," an exhibition, dinner, and park playfest; oral histories filmed and televised on local access channel, "The Great 8" (September 24,25, 2010)

    Speaker, Envisioning Wonders: The Greening of Detroit 20th Anniversary, Renaissance High School (November, 2010)

    Film showings of Where Do the Children Play? sponsored by Sunward Co-Housing and Lesbian Moms, Ann Arbor (April, 2011) 

    Soundscapes of Childhood Exhibition, Hatcher Library, (October 7-December 20, 2013)

    "Where Do the Children Play?" and Soundscapes of Childhood, GetWellNetwork, bedside TV in over 70 children's hospitals (June 2014)

    Website for Soundscapes of Childhood

    Text for Photographic Exhibition on Children's Play (Curator Elaine Pitt) for Legacy Land Conservancy, at Ann Arbor District Library (July 24 to September 1, 2014) and C.S. Mott Children's Hospital (September 1 to October 31, 2014)


    “To the Lighthouse in Michigan Children's Narratives,” Children's Literature Association Conference (June, 2010)

    Invited Participant, Texas Children in Nature Conference, Austin, TX (December, 2010)

    Invited Speaker, Finalist for $3000 Research Grant, Conference on the Value of Play, Clemson University, Clemson, SC (February, 2011)

    TV Interview, Green Room (March, 2011)

    Speaker, St. Anne's Belfield Parents Association, Charlottesville, VA (April, 2011)

    Speaker, Greater West Bloomfield Historical Society and Friends of Apple Island  (April, 2011)

    Workshop Leader, U-M Work/Life Programs, Early Childhood Training (May, 2011)

    Invited Participant, "Creativity, Play and the Imagination Across the Disciplines," Conference at Teachers College, Columbia University,  NYC (May, 2011)

    BBC/PRI's The World, Interview with Kavita Pillay on Finnish schools and the role of recess (June 5, 2013)

    Lecturer, "Growing Up Near the Great Lakes: 'By the Shores of Gitchee Gumee'", Harvard/Stanford Alumni Association Cruise (July 30-Auguest 8, 2013)

    Nevada Public Radio, Desert Companion, Interview with Chantal Corcoran about children and technology (March 21, 2014)

    Michigan Public Radio News, Interview with Kate Wells on healing effects of nature-inspired art in children's hospitals (April 24, 2014)


    The Max Warburg Courage Curriculum Advisory Board, Boston MA (2014 to present)

    Consultant and Host, Froebel Conference, Hands On Museum, Ann Arbor, MI (October 11-13, 2013)

    Phoenix Award Committee, Children's Literature Association (2010 to present)


    Blue Ribbon, UROP Spring Symposium

    Provost's Teaching Innovation Prize (one of ten finalists)