Professor Mary Lee Griffin is researching mindfulness practices and the effect on young readers and writers. As part of a 2010 Wheaton Research Partnership, she and six Wheaton students conducted research in a local public school. Griffin, who teaches courses on early literacy, reading and writing curriculum, and the social contexts of teaching and learning, is exploring whether the practice of being still and in the moment can help young children better focus on their work for prolonged periods and improve their literacy skills. The interest in the learning applications of mindfulness has grown around the world in recent years. In the United States, Secretary of Education Arne Duncan has expressed an interest in mindfulness approaches to improve education and student achievement.