The Implementation of Trauma-Informed Practices In Music Education

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University of Delaware
Trauma and traumatic experiences have been shown to impact the brain and brain functioning, which in turn can severely impede a student’s ability to learn and function in a classroom (Perry, 2016). Over the past few decades, trauma-informed practices have been developed to help mitigate the negative effects of trauma. Trauma informed practices are research and evidence-based strategies that educators and other professionals use to help support students with trauma. Additionally, music is frequently used as a modality for the treatment and healing of trauma in the field of music therapy due to the positive impacts that music has on the brain. Despite the significant amount of research that focuses on these benefits, there is currently very little literature on trauma-informed practices in music education. This thesis aims to fill this gap in the research literature by reviewing current literature in the fields of music therapy, neuroscience, psychology, and education. For this senior thesis, I also interviewed three music educators currently implementing trauma informed practices in their music classrooms. I identified key practices educators are using in their classroom, how they discovered these practices, and what educators thought were their barriers to implementation based on the interviews and the literature review.
Trauma-informed practices, Classrooms, Music, Education