Embedding therapeutic training in teacher education: building resilience in teachers.
journal contributionposted on 16.09.2014, 13:46 by Sarah Turner, Maggie Braine
Early career teachers are under considerable pressure and are expected to adjust quickly to the complex and demanding role of teaching. The percentage of teachers who leave the profession within the first five years is concerning (Carlyle and Woods, 2002; Wilhelm et al., 2000). This study researched the emotional effects on the teaching and personal lives of early career teachers and was funded by Loughborough University Design Education Research Group. We employed a mixed methods approach. A pre questionnaire ascertained early career teachers’ school experiences and the consequences (if any) on their personal lives. In response to this, 44 teachers in four different schools were offered six hours of therapeutic training. A follow-up questionnaire and group interviews considered the impact of the training on practice. Key findings indicated that therapeutic training was beneficial for normalising many of the concerns raised. It offered an opportunity to share situations within a group which improved teachers’ self- awareness and their awareness of others. The main conclusions revealed the deep physical and emotional exhaustion experienced by these teachers. The impact of the therapeutic training appeared to be extremely positive. This suggests it could be a significant area to be covered during a teacher education course to build resilience to sustain teachers in the profession.