[Forwarded from JDS – to Friends of The John Dewey Society]
I am writing as director of the University of Chicago Laboratory Schools to invite you to participate in a conference we are hosting in Chicago from May 2-4, 2019, the Centennial Colloquium on Dewey: Then and Now. The conference commemorates the 100th anniversary of a transformative two-year trip to China made by University of Chicago Laboratory Schools founder John Dewey. As a member of the John Dewey Society, I believe this conference will be of interest to you, and that the conference will be enriched by your presence.
Educator and philosopher John Dewey and his wife, Alice, founded the University of Chicago Laboratory Schools in 1896. Today, as then, Lab is a community of educators who, reflecting the intellectual rigor and evidence-based research of the University of Chicago, advocate for best practices to prepare students for fulfilling lives. In our classrooms, we honor, explore, and interpret Dewey’s ideas about teaching and learning—ideas that Dewey shared in a series of lectures at schools and universities across China from 1919 to 1921. The Centennial Colloquium on Dewey: Then and Now will bring together international researchers, policy-makers, and school-level educators to examine Dewey’s impact and further our understanding of how education has evolved.
The conference features 18 speakers from the United States and China, including keynote speakers University of Chicago Nobel laureate James J. Heckman and Professor Shi Zhongying of Beijing Normal University. Session topics range from Dewey’s past and present impact in the US and China to current challenges in Chinese education, meeting the needs of rural students, and progressive approaches to art and education.
True to Dewey’s philosophies, the conference also includes a variety of hands-on experiences. Participants can observe classes at the Lab Schools and UChicago charter schools, reflect on issues of civic engagement by visiting organizations that serve Chicago’s South Side, screen a documentary film made by high school students from Chicago and Beijing about their trip retracing Dewey’s path through China, and participate in an art activation project.
John Dewey believed in continuous learning. Through this conference, we can learn from experts, from students, and from one another, furthering his legacy, and our own education. I hope you are able to join us.
Director, The University of Chicago Laboratory Schools
Colleen Newquist Communications