Currently a first year doctoral student at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Robert Carr initially discovered his interest in children's social and academic enrichment as an undergraduate student in the department of Communication at UCSD. As an undergraduate, he spent three quarters working with school age children at the La Clase Mágica/St. Leo's site in Solana Beach. After graduation, he became the Program Coordinator of the Mi Clase Mágica preschool program, linking children together with undergraduate students in a collaborative learning environment. Robert's additional post-graduation roles as Staff Research Associate for the LCM Research Team and Graduate Student Researcher for the UC Links Preschool Study enabled him to further cultivate his interest in child development studies both in the local San Diego Community and abroad.
Under the guidance of Dr. Olga Vásquez, Robert managed the LCM Research team in the design of a construction block toy curriculum for preschool children. His contributions to LCM also extend to the global community, having joined Dr. Vásquez, along with a team of educational anthropologists, on an exploratory research trip "to propose a bilingual-intercultural education model for indigenous communities in the Columbian Amazon." In this journey, Robert and his colleagues set the foundation for the design of culturally relevant curriculum and pedagogy. During his subsequent work as a Graduate Student Researcher for UC Links Preschool Study, under the direction of Dr. Alison Wishard Guerra, Robert conducted research assessments of children's emergent language and literacy skills; skills children need to perform competently in the preschool classroom. His work in examining children's development supplemented his role as the Program Coordinator for MCM.
Robert at the 2013 Mi Arte Mi Voz.
Robert accepting a "Thank You" card from Carlsbad pre-school in 2011.
When I asked Robert whether he believed his current work had been influenced by his former work at LCM, his answer was a resounding "absolutely". Building on his interests in children's educational enrichment, Robert is presently continuing his graduate studies as a doctoral student in the School of Education at Carolina. Along with his studies, he is currently working at the renowned Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute on a US Department of Education funded project to develop a pedagogical framework for preschool mathematics. His future plans do not diverge from his past accomplishments or his present works, for he plans to pursue a career in educational research, "with a keen interest to understand how children's early educational experiences in center based programs support their learning and development". The future is looking forward to what Robert has in store next for forthcoming generations of children and scholars.
Communication/ Class of 2014
UC San Diego