Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

“Sense of Place” Development: A Teacher's Action Research Project
by Tanzer, Erin, M.A., Prescott College, 2011, 248; 1492595
Abstract (Summary)

This thesis describes a teacher action research project conducted on the author's own instruction to determine effective Place-based education pedagogical approaches to foster “sense of place” development. This study was conducted during youth summer day programs for students ranging in age from PreK-8th grade at the Teton Science Schools. Grounded theory was used to analyze the qualitative data collected from the author and students through a teaching journal, program debriefs, student observations, student work, and photographs. The results indicate six emergent themes for effective Place-based education pedagogy: community; Place-based education curriculum; critical thinking; exploration & experience; creative expression; and student engagement. The author crafted action steps based on these findings to improve her teaching practice and more effectively foster “sense of place” development in students. These steps include: adopting an experiential education curriculum design; modifying assessment strategies to effectively meet the needs of summer programs; and continuing reflective practice through teaching journal entries.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Verbeten, Amy
Commitee: Cox Caniglia, Noel, Landale, April
School: Prescott College
Department: Education
School Location: United States -- Arizona
Source: MAI 49/05M, Masters Abstracts International
Source Type: DISSERTATION
Subjects: Environmental education, Pedagogy
Keywords: Action research, Experiential education, Grounded theory, Pedagogical approaches, Place-based education, Sense of place
Publication Number: 1492595
ISBN: 9781124648446
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