The Institute’s director of pedagogy and Rutgers Univ. early childhood education faculty Carrie Lobman was among presenters at The 4th Congress of the International Society for Cultural and Activity Research in Sydney, Australia. The conference drew some 400 scholars and researchers in the cultural historical tradition to the Antipodes.
Keynote presentations were made by: Michael Cole director of the Laboratory of Comparative Human Development at the Univ. of California at San Diego, who reported on the evolution and transformation of his longitudinal after-school project, The Fifth Dimension; Anna Stetsenko, professor at the City University of New York Grad Center, who addressed how to move From Participation to Transformation and a transformative activist stance for human development and education; and Fernando Gonzalez Rey, a professor at the University Center of Brasilia, who challenged traditional individualistic understandings of motivation.
Carrie led a symposium titled, The Expanding Global Influence of Newman and Holzman’s Vygotsky, which brought together a panel of colleagues who have studied at the Institute and developed a social therapeutic approach in their respective countries. Participants in this lively discussion of play, dialectics and pointless activity included Cecilia Magalhaes and Wellington Oliviera who presented on how Newman and Holzman’s ‘revolutionary Vygotsky’ has inspired the investigations of their Language in Activities in School Research Group (LACE) in Brazil, founded by Magalhaes and Fernanda Liberali. They were joined by Mike Askew from Monash University in Melbourne, who presented on ways Newman and Holzman’s advancements on Vygotsky’s understanding of play has shaped his work in elementary school mathematics; and Annalie Pistourus, an International Class alumna (also currently in long-distance supervision with the Institute’s Therapist Training Program director Christine LaCerva), who discussed what’s it like to do social therapy in Pretoria, South Africa.