Type of Document Dissertation Author Broome, Jeffrey Lynn URN etd-11132006-184124 Title Teaching Art in a Multi-age Elementary Environment Degree Doctor of Philosophy Department Art Education, Department of Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title Tom Anderson Committee Chair Debbie Floyd Committee Member Jeff Milligan Committee Member Pat Villeneuve Committee Member Keywords
- Art Education
- Cooperative Learning
- Visual Arts
- Continuous Progress
- Nongraded Classrooms
- Multi-Age Education
Date of Defense 2006-09-01 Availability unrestricted AbstractThis study explores the qualities that characterize art teaching in selected elementary schools containing multi-age models of instruction. Multi-age learning environments are defined as the purposive grouping of students from two or more grade levels in order to form a classroom community of learners. During past decades, multi-age education has been examined in literature in many contexts. In the subject area of art, however, little literature can be found that addresses multi-age instruction. This study begins to rectify that situation through the use of qualitative research methods. Surveys were used to collect broad information on the practices and perceptions of multi-age art teachers. Observations and interviews were also conducted with a uniquely selected multi-age art educator. The data from all sources was structurally corroborated before findings were presented in the form of descriptive statistics and qualitative narratives.
The results showed that the multi-age art teachers did not play a large role in the organizational structure of their multi-age art classes. Most of the surveyed art teachers had not received multi-age training and almost none of them had been given a choice as to their willingness to participate in nongraded structures. In spite of these factors, the majority of the surveyed art teachers supported the use of multi-age groupings in art classrooms. The use of
thematic instruction and scaffolding techniques resonated equally well in the art room as in other multi-age situations. The most frequently expressed disadvantage of multi-age art instruction related to the presence of widely ranging developmental spans. The most frequently expressed advantage related to the use of scaffolding techniques.
The findings were used to develop nine recommendations for fostering multi-age art education in interested elementary schools. The research project concluded that multi-age art education does not have to operate that differently from traditional models of art instruction on a functional level. On a conceptual level, however, multi-age art education can be quite different. The study proposed a continuum of development for multi-age art educators. The continuum presented options that ranged from functional possibilities to a fully formed conceptual model of multi-age art education.
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