francesca zanatta

Dr Francesca Zanatta

Lecturer

Department of Early Childhood & Education , School of Education and Communities

Francesca is an activist and academic, primarily interested in the realisation of children's rights. Her teaching and her research are informed by her prior studies in Anthropology and Psychotherapy/Psychology. Her doctoral thesis, a critique of attachment theory, explored the importance of disrupting and critically deconstructing theories of identity and child development. Francesca is a member of the British Association for International Comparative Education and of the Children's Rights Alliance for England; she currently volunteers for the Hackney Pirates and sits on the Board of Directors for the Play Association of Tower Hamlets. At UEL, Francesca is Module Leader for ED5005 (Advocating for Children's Rights in National and International Contexts) and its distance learning equivalent and for ED6007, Research Dissertation module.

Areas Of Interest

My main passion is advancing and promoting the children's rights agenda, both through research and practice.  My PhD focuses on revisiting attachment theory in light of cultural specificity, feminist theory and children's rights-based approach.

As reflection on my teaching practice, I am also exploring the role of children's rights in the formation of future professionals with my colleague Dr Jennifer Robson.
 
My MSc dissertation focused on the role of religion in child development and as part of my PGCert submissions I reflected on the implementation of Technology Enhanced Learning in Higher Education.

I am currently collaborating with Barnardo's in working with Care Leavers and promoting and implementing children's rights of participation.

On This Page

OVERVIEW

Francesca is a Lecturer in Early Childhood Studies.

Following the completion of  her BA in Psychology from the University of Padua (Italy), Francesca commenced her career as researcher at the Centre for Immigrant Health at New York University. She moved to London in 2007 where she gained a MSc in Culture and Health at University College London and a PGDiploma in Infant Observation at the Tavistock and Portman Clinic. Following the successful completion of the PGCert in Teaching and Learning in Higher Education at UEL, in 2015 Francesca was accredited as Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.

Francesca has completed her PhD at University College London with a thesis on Attachment in Caribbean Families in London.

Her professional career in Early Education started as LSA in a Primary School, where she worked  with children with Special Educational Needs and English as Second Language.  Francesca then moved onto the voluntary sector; first  promoting the right to play for children with Special Needs and Disabilities for Action for Children, and then managing a Family Project, Children's Rights and  Care Leavers Project for Barnardo's.

Francesca is a member of the British Association for International Comparative Education and of the Children's Rights Alliance for England; she currently volunteers for the Hackney Pirates and sits on the Board of Directors for the Play Association of Tower Hamlets. At UEL, Francesca is Module Leader for ED5005 (Advocating for Children's Rights in National and International Contexts) and its distance learning equivalent and for ED6007, Research Dissertation module.

External roles:

  • Member of the Board of Directors at PATH (Play Association Tower Hamlets) (Secretary)
  • Volunteer for Hackney Pirates
  • Member of BAICE and CRAE
  • Member of the Spokesperson Network at the New Economic Foundation

CURRENT RESEARCH

  • Trapped in the Dyad: Theorising Families Beyond Attachment Theory' (PhD Thesis)
  • TEL: Using videos and e-journals as formative assessment in Higher Education (funded by CELT UEL as LEO)
  • Children's Rights in the formation of practitioners
  • The use of technology in advocating for Children's Rights
  • The impact of Brexit on European children living in the UK

Recent conference papers:

  • Zanatta, F. and Cakir, N. (2017) Children's participation in the training of professionals and volunteers: reflections on bridging theory, practice and children's experience. Unpublished presentation at: Oxford Network for Children's Rights Seminar Series, February 2017, University of Oxford
  • Zanatta, F. (2016) 'Are we really doomed?' Critical pathways for Advancing Children's Rights Through theory and Practice Unpublished conference paper at: British Association International Comparative Education (BAICE) Thematic Forum - Children's Rights, October 2016, Cambridge University
  • Robson, J. and Zanatta, F. (2016) 'The status of children's rights: shaping an understanding of children's rights within the professional formation of education and children's services practitioners.' Unpublished conference paper at Children and Young People in a Changing World: Action, Agency and Participation June 2016, Liverpool Hope
  • Zanatta, F. (2016) Trapped in the Dyad.  Unpublished conference paper at British Sociological Association, What Next For Childhood Studies? April 15th 2016 University of Edinburgh.

PUBLICATIONS

Zanatta, F., S. Dein and R. Littlewood (2011) Communication as magic: An ethnographic study on child-God communication in Northern Italy. World Cultural Psychiatric Research Review June: 61-74

FUNDING

2015-2016

London Scholars (project in collaboration with Barnardo's)

Learning Enhancement Opportunities - the use of videos and e-journals as formative assessment

TEACHING

  • Module Leader ED5005 'Advocating for Children's Rights in National and International Contexts '(both on campus and Distance Learning)
  • Seminar Leader ED6014 Children, Culture and Globalisation
  • Seminar Leader ED5004 Observing, Documenting and Researching with Children, Families and Practitioners
  • Seminar Leader ED4034 Pedagogy: Supporting Development in Early Years
  • Dissertation Supervisor BA
  • Dissertation Supervisor MA