Leave it at the door: how teachers manage their emotions as they support children during prep transition.
thesisposted on 2017-03-02, 00:37 authored by Ewens, Maxine
Authors acknowledge the importance of emotional well-being for children during the transition from pre-school to primary school, with the dominant body of research contending that children will adapt more successfully into classrooms where teachers promote a positive learning environment. However, there is significantly less research focusing on the emotions of teachers around the time of transition. The purpose of this study was to discover how teachers manage their emotions in the classroom as they support children in their first year of primary school. Four preparatory grade (‘prep’) teachers from two different primary schools in the eastern suburbs of Melbourne, Australia, participated in this research project. Participants’ conversations were audiotaped on two separate occasions and framed as narrative accounts using a Narrative Inquiry Method. An inductive approach to data analysis highlighted specific themes whereby teachers managed their emotions under specific conditions. This study is a timely investigation of the emotional lives of teachers at a critical point in young children lives. Findings suggest that teachers are concerned about displaying negative emotions within the school environment for fear of projecting an unsuitable image and will suppress their emotions to continue to provide a positive learning experience for children.