In 2006, during the course of Master of Education at the University of Sao Paulo, I started to attend at the GEPAPe (Group of Study and Research on pedagogical activities). This group is coordinated by Professor Manoel Oriosvaldo de Moura (my supervisor) and brings together graduate students and teachers from public and private universities of different cities in Brazil. All studies and surveys in this group are based on historical-cultural theory and specifically the theory of activity. My participation in this group allows me not only to access the readings of texts by referenced authors from this theory (Vygotsky, Luria, Leontiev, Davydov, Elkonin, Galperin and Engestrom, among others) but it also gives me the opportunity to discuss key concepts. In this sense, collective study is essential.
Interest in the organization of education and training of students through theoretical thinking is a common goal the group seeks to achieve, and each member develops their individual projects not in the expectation of “solving all the problems of teaching” but hoping it will add elements to the group discussion and in this sense strengthen it.
My background in Mathematics and Pedagogy allows me to contribute to this, so that both projects (doctorate and masters) were developed with a focus on the algebra teaching, which is the source of many difficulties for the learning of students. They were also based on the concepts of historical-cultural theory understanding to the psychological process of individual and social development.
Because the Summer Iscar 2012 is also the work of a group that for a few days will be discussing theoretical concepts and projects in development, the possibility it offers for the immersion in the historical-cultural theory is unique. My project deals specifically with issues of appropriation of algebraic concepts, in fact, a particularity of universal processes of the appropriation of concepts, and specially the processes of generalization and abstraction of thought, for which the historical-cultural theory offers many contributions.
I know the contributions of historical-cultural theory are not restricted to this, and I hope that my participation in the Summer Iscar will, on the one hand, contribute to my personal development and my individual project, and on the other hand I am aware that I carry with me experiences of a group that for more than 10 years has been studying the concepts of the theory and in this sense I feel I am able to also enrich the discussions of the group.