Learning to Teach the Creative Arts in Primary Schools Through Community Engagement
Russell-Bowie, D. (2009). Learning to Teach the Creative Arts in Primary Schools Through Community Engagement. International Journal of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education, 20(2), 298-306.
This formative case study follows 13 undergraduate students planning to become classroom teachers and who are completing a field study placement in an elementary school. The placement involves teaching or assisting in a variety of arts-based projects during the school day and after school. The study addresses outcomes for the student teachers, classroom teachers, school community and elementary students using a model for academic service-learning and community engagement that emphasizes interdependent components of experience, reflection, and knowledge. The study found positive outcomes for the student teachers, classroom teachers, the school’s students, and the community.
- Undergraduate students changed personally and professionally as a result of the experience, learning about their teaching, increasing their confidence and competence, and confirming their choice of chosen career as a classroom teacher.
- Teachers reported inspiration and new ideas about including the arts in their lessons and appreciated having assistance in their classroom that allowed them to give more individual focus to their students.
- Classroom teachers and student teachers reported growth in elementary students’ academic, emotional, social, and artistic development.
- Parents and others reported the positive benefits to the school by engaging in a partnership linking university students in the local community to mutually beneficial outcomes.