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AN ART THERAPY
APPROACH TO
BEHAVIOR
MODIFICATION
By: Ashley
Morissette
ED 7201
Dr. O’ConnorPetruso
Fall 2011
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Introduction
Why Ar t Therapy?
Pros and Cons
Statement of the Problem
Review of Related Literature
Current Instructional Strategies
Par ticipants
Instruments
Hypothesis
References
INTRODUCTION
Art therapy is a growing field and has gained
wide acceptance as a modality that uses the
nonverbal language of art for personal
growth , insight and transformation .
(Malchiodi,2007) Art therapy has been used as a
medium to assist students with special needs,
physical and mental disabilities and students
with behavioral problems such as ADHD and
ODD.
WHY ART THERAPY?
Art therapy uses the creative process to help individuals:
 resolve conflicts and problems
 develop sense of self (Nisenson, 2008)
 manage behavior
 create new patterns of learning (Nisenson, 2008)
 increase self-esteem and awareness
STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
Special education students with behavioral problems have
trouble staying focused and on track.
Behavioral management distracts from valuable instruction
time.
Some classroom environments do not nurture special
education students needs.
Majority of the subjects taught throughout the day tap into
logical thinking skills and not enough time is spent on their
senses and imagination.
Art serves as a vehicle for developmental learning and can
impacts the spirit and emotional response of a child.
Arts instruction is a catalyst for creative expression, social
development and can aid in problem solving.
Budget cuts have caused very little to no arts instruction.
REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE
Research indicates that the majority of children with
emotional difficulties also have learning disabilities
(Freilich & Shectman, 2010).
Play and artistic expression are commonly used in
therapeutic and educational settings ( Bagilishya,
Drapeau, Heusch, Lacroix, & Rousseau, 2005).
 Many studies (Adu-Agyem, 2009; Bagilishya et al.,
2005; Dorff & Pochedley, 2008; Dunn-Snow, 1999;
Naumburg, 2001) have investigated the link between
art making in the classroom setting and increased self esteem.
REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE
Art therapy practices facilitate in connecting
children’s expression of emotion and serve as a
vehicle for non-verbal communication (AduAgyem, 2009; Mason, Steedy, & Thorman, 2008)
Art and music therapy are a mirror into the
personality. (Nisenson, 2008)
Children whose emotional health is strained can
benefit from art therapy through the intervention
of play work and creative arts. (Dunn-Snow,
1999; (Frost, 2005)
REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE
(CONT’D)
 It is critical for all students, including those who are
atypically developing such as those with autism, to have
access to an art experience at school.( Furniss, 2009;
Buenaflor, 2008)
 Art therapy as a component to social skills training may
increase the willingness of children to participate
because art is an activity that they find acceptable. ( Epp,
2008; Naumburg, 2001)
 Art therapy allows children to solve problems visually
and offers a non-threatening way to deal with rejection .
(Freilich, R., & Shectman, Z., 2010)
REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE
(CONT’D)
Art has the potential to assist special needs children in
communicating with others and to obtain confidence in
their own ideas. (Balke, 1997; Germain, 2008)
 By allowing students more freedom and accountability
when making art in the classroom, teachers can promote
self-worth as an artist and foster self-esteem at the same
time. (Rufo, 2011; Viza, 2005; Taylor, 2005 )
Some of the most commonly mentioned benefits of art
therapy are self-esteem, self-expression, problem solving,
and conflict resolution (Bagilishya et al., 2005).
SAMPLE ART INTEGRATED MATH
ACTIVITIES
SAMPLE ART INTEGRATED MATH
ACTIVITIES
SAMPLE ART INTEGRATED MATH
ACTIVITIES
PARTICIPANTS
A group of students from P.S. X- a lowincome urban school in East New York, Brooklyn.
The population is 43% African American, 25%
Asian and 21% Hispanic. The participants will be
first-grade students who have demonstrated a
lack of focus , behavioral problems , and/or
underdeveloped social skills.
INSTRUMENTS: APPENDIX D
D e a r P a r e n t / G ua r d i a n ,
I a m c u r r e n t l y a g r a d ua te s t u d e n t i n B r o o k l yn C o l l eg e ’ s C h i l d h o o d E d u c a t i o n
M a s te r ’ s p r o g r a m . I a m c o n d uct i n g a r e s e a r c h s t u d y o n t h e b e n e f i t s o f i n f u si n g a r t
r e l a te d a c t i v i t i e s i n to M a t h l e s s o n s , i n o r d e r to i n c r e a s e t h e s t u d e n t s ’ o n - t a s k
b e h av i o r. I a m r e q u e s t i n g yo u r p e r m i s s i o n to u s e yo u r c h i l d ’ s d a t a f o r my r e s e a r c h
s t u d y. A l l i n s t r uc t io n w i l l t a ke p l a c e i n yo ur c h i l d ’s r e g u l a r c l a s s r o o m a n d t h ey w i l l b e
r e c e i v i n g t h e s a m e o b j e c t iv e s a s t h e r e s t o f t h e c l a s s . T h i s s t u d y w i l l a l s o a l l ow yo u r
c h i l d to g a i n ex p o s ur e to a r t s i n s t r uc t io n .
A l l r e s u l t s f o r t h i s s t u d y w i l l b e r e p o r te d a s a g r o u p s t u d y a n d t h e r e f o r e , t h e
p a r t i c ip a n t ’ s n a m e s a n d i n f o r m a t i o n w i l l b e a n o ny m o us . I g r e a t l y a p p r ec i a te yo ur
support.
S i n c e r e l y,
A s h l ey M o r i s s et te
I g i v e my c h i l d __ _ _ _ _ __ _ _ _ _ __ _ _ _ _ __ _ _ _ _ __ _ _ _ _ __ _ _ _ _ __ _ _ _ _ p e r m i s s i o n to b e a
p a r t i c ip a n t i n t h i s r e s e a r c h s t u d y.
P a r e n t ’ s S i g n a t ur e : _ __ _ _ _ _ __ _ _ _ _ __ _ _ _ _ __ _ _ _ _ __ _ _ _ _ __ _ _
D a te : _ _ _ _ _ __ _ _ _ _ _ __ _ _ _ _ __
INSTRUMENTS: APPENDIX D
Sample of
Behavioral
Checklist
INSTRUMENTS: APPENDIX B
D e a r _ _ _ _ __ _ _ _ _ __ _ _ _ _ __ _ _ ,
I a m c u r r e n t l y a g r a d ua te s t u d e n t i n B r o o k l yn C o l l eg e ’ s C h i l d h o o d E d u c a t i o n
M a s te r ’ s p r o g r a m . I a m c o n d uct i n g a r e s e a r c h s t u d y o n t h e b e n e f i t s o f i n f u s i n g a r t
r e l a te d a c t i v i t i e s i n to M a t h l e s s o n s , i n o r d e r to i n c r e a s e t h e s t u d e n t s ’ o n - t a s k
b e h av i o r. I a m r e q u e s t i n g yo u r p e r m i s s i o n to u s e yo u r s t u d e n t ’ s d a t a f o r my r e s e a r c h
s t u d y. I w i l l i n f u s e a r t - i n te g r a te d t a s k s i n to yo u r ex i s t in g l e s s o n p l a n s d u r i n g t h e m a t h
b l o c k o f yo u r d ay. I n s t r uc t i o n w i l l t a ke p l a c e 3 t i m e s a w e e k , o v e r a 6 - w e e k p e r i o d . A l l
i n s t r uc t i o n w i l l t a ke p l a c e i n yo u r c l a s s ro o m a n d t h e s t u d e n t s w i l l b e r e c e i v i n g t h e
s a m e o b j e c t i ve s a s t h e r e s t o f t h e c l a s s . I w i l l m e a s u r e s t u d e n t s ’ p r o g r e s s b y
r e q u e s t i n g yo ur p a r t i c i pa t io n i n a q u e s t i o n n a i r e r e g a r d in g s t u d e n t s ’ b e h av i o r s, p r e
a n d p o s t i n te r ve n t i o n .
A l l r e s u l t s f o r t h i s s t u d y w i l l b e r e p o r te d a s a g r o u p s t u d y a n d t h e r e f o r e , t h e
p a r t i c ip a n t ’ s n a m e s a n d i n f o r m a t i o n w i l l b e a n o ny m o us . I g r e a t l y a p p r ec i a te yo ur
s u p p o r t . I f yo u h av e a ny q u e s t i o n s p l e a s e f e e l f r e e to c o n t a c t m e .
A s h l ey.m o r i s s et te@ g m a i l.c o m o r 3 0 5 . 4 3 9 . 76 2 2 .
S i n c e r e l y,
A s h l ey M o r i ss et te
I , _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ __ _ _ _ _ __ _ _ _ _ __ _ _ _ _ __ _ _ _ _ __ _ _ _ _ __ _ g i v e my p e r m i s s i o n to b e a
p a r t i c ip a n t i n t h i s r e s e a r c h s t u d y.
Te a c h e r ’s S i g n a t ur e : _ _ _ __ _ _ _ _ __ _ _ _ _ __ _ _ _ _ __ _ _ _ _ __ _ _ _ _ __
D a te : _ _ _ _ _ __ _ _ _ _ _ __ _ _ _ _ __
INSTRUMENTS: APPENDIX C
Dear Principal_____________________ ,
I am currently a graduate student in Brooklyn College’s Childhood Education Master’s
program. I am conducting a research study on the benefits of infusing ar t related activities into
M a t h l e s s o n s , i n o r d e r t o i n c r e a s e t h e s t u d e n t s ’ o n - t a s k b e h a v i o r. T h i s s t u d y r e q u i r e s a n
inter vention to be implemented in a real classroom setting. I am requesting your permission to
u s e s e l e c t f i r s t g r a d e s t u d e n t ’ s d a t a f o r m y r e s e a r c h s t u d y. I w i l l i n f u s e a r t - i n t e g r a t e d t a s k s i n t o
t h e t e a c h e r ’ s e x i s t i n g l e s s o n p l a n s d u r i n g t h e m a t h b l o c k o f t h e d a y. I n s t r u c t i o n w i l l t a k e p l a c e 3
times a week, over a 6-week period. All instruction will take place in the child’s regular
classroom and the students will be receiving the same objectives as the rest of the class. I will
measure students’ progress by requesting the teacher’s participation in a questionnaire
regarding students’ behaviors, pre and post intervention.
All results for this study will be reported as a group study and therefore, the participant’s names
and information will be anonymous. I greatly appreciate your suppor t. If you have any questions
p l e a s e f e e l f r e e t o c o n t a c t m e . A s h l e y. m o r i s s e t t e @ g m a i l . c o m o r 3 0 5 . 4 3 9 . 76 2 2 .
S i n c e r e l y,
Ashley Morissette
I, __________________________________________ give my permission to be a par ticipant in this
r e s e a r c h s t u d y.
Principal’s Signature:___________________________________ Date:____________________
HYPOTHESIS
HR1: By implementing art therapy practices to
15 first-grade students at PS X in Brooklyn, NY
for 45 minutes a day, 3 days a week, over a 6week period, students’ on-task behavior and
positive social skills will increase.
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