Author(s)

Melissa Stoffers

Date Approved

7-13-2011

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

M.S.T. Teaching

Department

Teacher Education

College

College of Education

First Advisor

Browne, Susan

Subject(s)

Education, Elementary--Audio-visual aids;Cognitive styles in children

Disciplines

Elementary Education and Teaching

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to examine how multi-sensory education impacts learning and community in a second grade general education classroom. Lesson plans that targeted multiple senses - and oftentimes included team-building activities - were developed and implemented in the classroom. Qualitative data was collected through interviews, focus groups, student work, and a teacher research journal. After analyzing the data, it was revealed that multi-sensory education can lead to student motivation and engagement, as well as provide a generative space for the use of technology and making connections to the outside world. Multi-sensory education can also help teachers to access students' needs and aid in fostering a positive classroom environment. Finally, using a teaching approach that targets the senses promotes the development of a student-centered classroom, and can encourage students, who may have been silent within traditional classroom settings, to emerge and have a voice within the multi-sensory classroom. Teaching through multi-sensory methods has enormous implications for new teachers, such as this teacher researcher, who are seeking ways to actively and meaningfully engage students within the classroom.

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