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CURRICULUM VITAE SUMMARY                          

Dr. Jacqui Cousins

Personal Details: Life-Experience and Education


1939-1956

Born into a nomadic Polish Gypsy/Irish Showman family. Through loss, in care of the Sisters of Sion.


1956-1957

St. Martin's School of Art and The College for Distributive Trades, London, for a year in  their Textile Departments.Studied colour,design, display/textile production and science.City and Guilds gold medal with a scholarship for fine-arts at St, Martin’s but married a designer and went to Australia.


1957-1967

An adventurous decade in Australia.  Three sons by the age of 23.  Tim born in Lithgow, Nick in Richmond and Chris in Kurrajong.  Jacqui helped with architectural designs in her husband's company.


1967-1977

Returned to London.Trained as a Nursery/ Infant teacher in Haringey; employed by them as their first Community and Inter-Agency liaison teacher. Head of Infants in Primary School.Family support groups.


1977-1987

Progressed to becoming a Head (in Devon) of an early childhood Diagnostic and Assessment Unit. Liaison with families was extended to work with all socio-psychological support services. The increase in knowledge and experience of many daily challenges faced by families resulted in Jacqui's development of therapeutic (sensory) environments for children indoors and out of doors. Linked with the Learning through Landscapes teams and learnt much from them. Re-married a potter and with him started clay-play workshops with children and families. Links with the Van-Leer Foundation (the Hague), the Max Planck Institute (Germany) and the U.N. Association for Threatened People (Gypsy division) Voice of Children and Peace Child Conference workshops empowerment and autonomy from babyhood.  


1987-1999

Early Years Advisor Devon LEA responsible for in-service courses and liaison with families and other professionals. Language research project for Devon LEA with University of Exeter.  Senior Lecturer in Education and Psychology Oxford Polytechnic (Oxford Brookes University).Completed PhD with a study of the mind- an analysis of four year olds talking and their teachers theorising about their talking and reasoning. Action-Research projects in Oxford and Ofsted Nursery inspections which led to articles published by the Times group and the book Listening to Four Year Olds by NEYN (National Early Years Network). Arts Director with TACTYC (Training, Advancement and Co-operation in Teaching Young Children). . British Council tours to visit settings and speak at Conferences in Scandinavia, Germany, Italy & France.


1999-2005

Retired from full time lecturing at Oxford but remained their Early Childhood Consultant for five years. Widowed but continued to put my VISION of empowerment and participation into ACTION.Joined the What Matters to Children team of Consultants (www,richlearningopportunities.co.uk). Developed therapeutic work through the arts. Worked as a volunteer on projects for those most disadvantaged or traumatised within various networks in war zones. Founded my place-to-be in France used either for on-going projects within various networks or for Early Years people just to BE! jacquicousins.co.uk


2005-2010

Early Years consultant with the Coram Family, Listening to Children research and national training project; National Marine Aquarium project worked with young children, artists and marine biologists as they collaborated to design a new experiential centre; guided grass roots changes in education in Wales- action research project in Gellideg; guided a Camden Movement Play action research project,


2010-2013

Elinor Goldschmeid Froebel Archive project, University of Roehampton.  Keynotes and writing continue but Jacqui's favourite job is being a Volunteer Elder at the Totnes Children's Centres!


2014 onwards

National Project on dementia with a focus on early prevention and intervention of alcohol and drug abuse.