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Title: Examining the effects of the holistic arts-based program on teachers’ stress, mindfulness and teaching practices
Authors: Hardy, Amanda
Keywords: mindfulness;arts based;group work;teacher presence;teachers;education;stress;mindfulness-based interventions;holistic arts-based program
Issue Date: 26-Jun-2019
Abstract: The concept of teacher stress has received extensive study in the field of education. School boards, unions, and governments acknowledge the high prevalence of stress amongst teachers. Efforts to mitigate the negative effects associated with teacher stress on teacher wellbeing and student learning conditions have led to the development of a number of interventions including Mindfulness-Based Interventions (MBIs). MBIs offer participants training in developing non-judgmental present moment awareness, which has been shown to decrease stress, anxiety, and depression. My research study examined the effects of a specific MBI, the Holistic Arts-Based Program (HAP) on teachers’ reported stress levels, mindfulness skills, and their teaching practices. HAP is an arts-based 12-week MBI designed to make mindfulness concepts and skills more accessible through the use of arts-based methods. Previous studies found that participating in HAP has positive benefits that include improved attention, coping skills, self-awareness, and self-esteem. Data was collected pre- and post-HAP. Teachers were interviewed and completed the Five Facet Mindfulness Questionnaire (FFMQ) and the Teacher Stress Inventory (TSI). Findings are promising regarding the feasibility, suitability, and benefits of HAP for teachers. The qualitative thematic analysis led to the development of the following themes: (1) more accurate and comprehensive understanding of mindfulness, (2) participants’ experiences learning mindfulness through experiential arts-based group work, (3) personal and professional benefits of learning mindfulness, and (4) educational consequences of teachers learning mindfulness through arts-based methods. The TSI and FFMQ also suggested that teacher participation in HAP contributed to decreased teacher stress and increased teachers’ mindfulness, their presence, and capacity to offer mindfulness activities to students. This study demonstrates how HAP could support teachers in increasing their own selfawareness and mindfulness practice, thereby mitigating some of the negative effects of stress. Participants in this study also demonstrated a keen interest in bringing mindfulness into their schools and classrooms. Future consideration may be given to offer arts-based mindfulness training to teachers in different formats such as full-day workshops or professional development sessions.
Appears in Collections:Interdisciplinary Health / Santé interdisciplinaire - Master's Theses
Master's Theses

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