Abstract

The purpose of this action research project was to study my own teaching and find out what I could learn about how trauma affects my classes, how I can meet the challenges my students face and how I can playfully and respectfully assist them on their learning journey. The questions I asked myself that guided my research were: 1) In what ways does my teaching practice change when I approach it with a more trauma-informed lens than a less trauma-informed lens? 2) What are the different outcomes when I approach my lesson delivery with a more playful approach than with a less playful approach? and 3) In what ways do improvisational practices help my teaching from getting stagnant? I collected data from my own personal journals as I did my practicum over the last three terms, the comments from the formal observations I had and the commentaries I wrote for the planning, instruction and assessment tasks of my edTPA.

As a music teacher, one of the most important lessons I teach is one of self-acceptance. Throughout the year, it became apparent that my students needed reprieve from the daily turmoil they faced. In the case of some, they encountered two simultaneous pandemics - one after their physical health and another after their mental, emotional and spiritual health. I see my position as one who can aid in the internal struggle, as music is a healing force.

This process has helped me recognize the strengths and limitations that I face going into my teaching career. Being reflective and seeing myself through the lens of this research has transformed me, and the classrooms I meet with in the coming years will feel the effects of my findings here. We all have the ability to shape our futures - we have to be willing to stand the discomfort of not knowing long enough for the new reality to come alive in us.

Exit Requirement

Action Research

Date of Award

6-12-2021

Degree Name

Master of Arts in Teaching (initial licensure)

Department

Education

Committee Chair

Kenneth Carano

Committee Member

Dianne Nelson

Keywords

improvisation, play, collaboration, collaborative, trauma, trauma-informed

Language

eng

Type (DCMI Terms)

Text; Image; StillImage

Subject Categories

Education

Rights Statement URL

http://rightsstatements.org/vocab/InC/1.0/

Included in

Education Commons

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