Chess is creative, analytical, and spatial. Chess fosters engagement, connectivity, and visual literacy. Chess builds personal identity, executive function, and cultural diversity. Emerging from a military concept 1600 years ago, the game gives participants the opportunity to fully engage with peers and adults on a tactical, yet creative field. The unique, empirically validated approach of MiniChess™ develops a math sense on the chessboard with chess pieces as tools and squares as a textbook, bringing higher order thinking skills and reasoning abilities to learners in Africa. In remote villages, where children often grow up with no games or toys, chess is not only a vehicle for learning, but also an opportunity to engage the modern world. Learners gain confidence to go into unfamiliar circumstances, speak English with strangers, and make personally responsible decisions. Gender equity in this culture becomes a nonissue as girls and boys become partners and competitors. MiniChess™ is a licensed academic programme for 5-9 year olds integrating social skills, personal growth and creative thought. Management skills become a focus of playing and working in both math and chess. The schoolroom becomes the literal space for newly found language and conversation development, while an inner space of visualization, fantasy, and emotion begins to be acquired and nurtured. The chess culture of academic interplay develops self-reliance as students continue their education away from the village as they move on to the secondary level. The MiniChess™ program is pedagogy of culture, academics, and personal development for learners worldwide.
Ann Fantauzzi, Marisa van der Merwe and Patricia Fennell
Ann Fantauzzi, Patricia A. Fennell, Kelly A. Bertrand and Sara Rieder Bennett
Life-changing experiences, cultural stress, and unexpected encounters may result in trauma for many who travel outside their homeland to work in the global south. Upon entry, culture shock may cause disequilibrium for those in the field not prepared to witness what they encounter, for example, the photojournalist embedded with the army, or the volunteer working in a refugee camp. Upon reentry, reverse culture shock may also occur after returning from many weeks of stressful work and difficult living conditions. Individuals may develop symptoms of chronic depression, grief, PTSD, disappointment, and conflict with their home culture and family. Reverse culture shock may occur when the home country cannot be tolerated and the ‘other’ culture is desperately longed for. This trauma can be effectively treated, and in fact integrated, using the arts. The empirically validated, multi-phased Fennell Four Phase Treatment (FFPT™) model recognises the influences of cultural and psychosocial factors in assessing and treating those with cultural shock or trauma. The system provides a narrative framework and a clinical map for the medical volunteer, non-governmental organisation (NGO) volunteer, or embedded journalist to respond to traumatic visual and experiential events. It is through the FFPT™ that the traveler’s life can reorder and possible trauma can be successfully addressed. A pilot project has been initiated combining the images of a photojournalist-NGO worker with the phase narrative intervention. The work and results will be reported. This phase approach is grounded in clinical practice to help travelers help themselves and fellow travelers integrate their life changing experiences and create positive change. Consequently, the discipline of photography, accompanied by recollection and reflection, descriptive writing and countertransference, can help the ‘wounded warrior.’
Patricia A. Fennell, Ann Fantauzzi, Sara Rieder Bennett and Kelly A. Bertrand
Life experiences, culture stress, and unexpected encounters may result in trauma for many who travel outside their homeland to work in the developing world. The empirically validated, multi-phased Fennell Four Phase Treatment (FFPT™) model recognises the influences of cultural and psychosocial factors in assessing and treating those with culture shock or trauma. It is through the phases of FFPT™ that the worker can move through crisis into stabilisation, through resolution and into integration, having successfully addressed their trauma. Upon arrival, culture shock may cause disequilibrium for those not prepared to witness and experience what they may encounter. Upon re-entry, reverse culture shock may occur after many weeks of stressful work and difficult living conditions. Individuals may begin to develop symptoms of chronic depression, grief, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and disappointment in home, culture, and family. Often, families suffer conflict. Reverse culture shock may occur when the home country cannot be tolerated and the ‘other’ culture is longed for desperately. An assessment, preparation, and debriefing programme is being piloted with The Giving Circle (TGC) for the medical workers, educators, and general non-governmental organisation (NGO) volunteers working in Uganda; the programme will be described and results reported. The FFPT™ phase approach is grounded in clinical practice to help participants help themselves and fellow workers integrate their life changing experiences and create positive change.