Sonja Baumer

Sonja Baumer has a multidisciplinary background in developmental and clinical psychology, as well as in media and communication studies. She has been associated with LCHC since 2000. During 2001-2006 she served as a coordinator for “Fifth Dimension” sites in Solana Beach and Del Mar and taught the “Media and the Design of Social Learning Environments” class. During 2003-2006 she was one of the lead researchers on the Playworld project. From 2006 to 2008 Sonja was a researcher at the University of California, Berkeley on the project ‘Digital Youth: Kids’ Informal Learning with Digital Media’.

Sonja is currently a practicing psychotherapist. She also serves as an adjunct faculty at the California School of Professional Psychology in San Francisco. Her clinical work has been substantially informed by cultural-historical theories. Her approach to mental illness goes beyond the medical model to incorporate insights about neurobiological, social, and cultural diversity, and the effects of social oppression on her clients’ well being (e.g., poverty, racism, homophobia, misogyny, etc.).

Selected Publications

  • Baumer, S. (2013) Human Connectivity and Emotion in Social Media. In S. Price & B. Brown (Eds.), Handbook of Digital Technology Research. London, UK: Sage.
  • Baumer, S. (2013). Play Pedagogy and Playworlds. In R.E. Tremblay , M. Boivin & R. de V. Peters (Eds.) Encyclopedia on Early Childhood Development. Montreal, Quebec: Centre of Excellence for Early Childhood Development.
  • Ito, M., Baumer, S, Bittanti, M, Boyd, D, Cody, R. et al (2010). Hanging Out, Messing Around, Geeking Out: Kids Living And Learning With New Media. Cambridge: MIT Press.
  • Baumer, S. & Radsliff, K (2010) Playworlds of Children and Adults: Cross Cultural Perspectives on Play Pedagogy. In Mind, Culture and Activity, 1(17)11-17.
  • Baumer, S, Ferholt, B. & Lecusay, R (2005). Promoting narrative competence through adult–child joint pretense: Lessons from the Scandinavian educational practice of playworld. Cognitive Development, 20(4),576-590

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