Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

A Breath of Possibility
by McCoy, Barbara Stott, M.A., The George Washington University, 2015, 170; 1584078
Abstract (Summary)

As a preschool teacher in an inclusive classroom, art is one of my primary tools for working with children. Art making is a way to open a door and help children develop trust. I spend most of the school year building that level of trust and close relationships in the classroom. However, I kept feeling outrage and remorse in the teaching profession. I needed a voice to convince others in the teaching profession of what I knew intuitively; the importance of self-knowledge, empathy, perspective, building relationships, and creativity in the classroom. I wanted to find people in the field who could inform and substantiate my teaching ethos. Carl Jung has been my catalyst, and over-arching premise, and has driven my choice of themes for my portfolio. Jung's theories have deepened my practice in the classroom and provided: a filter through which I can reflect on my own artwork, a compass to guide and direct my practice, and a theoretical framework for my educational philosophy. I chose a portfolio option which examines my practice as an artist/teacher/researcher through a theoretical framework, based on the contributions and applications of analytical psychology to education and child development by Carl Jung, substantiated by the theories and philosophies of Maxine Greene, Clifford Mayes, the Reggio Emilia approach, and Sally Smith. My artifacts provide physical evidence of my educational process. I became informed. My instincts were correct, but now I had a name for them, and I had theorists who could enlighten my practice, and help me inform others based on hard principles and strong theories. Jung has restored me, continues to renew and inspire me, and has taken me out of the mundane and everyday in the classroom. My journey has led me to a deeper understanding of others, and myself, which has engendered empathy and a changed perspective. These changed perspectives have allowed me to build deep trusting relationships with my students and my fellow teachers, permitting creativity to flourish. Creativity opens up the world of the possible.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Lawton, Pamela H.
Commitee: Alberts, Rebecca, Honig, Selila
School: The George Washington University
Department: Education and Human Development
School Location: United States -- District of Columbia
Source: MAI 54/03M(E), Masters Abstracts International
Subjects: Art education, Early childhood education, Special education, Education philosophy
Keywords: Analytical psychology, Art education, Jung, Carl, Teacher portfolio
Publication Number: 1584078
ISBN: 978-1-321-56719-9
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