Date of Award


Publication Type

Doctoral Thesis

Degree Name




First Advisor

Kara Smith


Communication and the arts, Education, Drama facilitation, Kindergarten, Sociodrama




In this a/r/tographic inquiry I explore how eleven Senior Kindergarten students experience sociodramatic activities based upon Boal's Theatre of the Oppressed and Aesthetics of the Oppressed work (1985, 1995, 1998, 2002, 2006). In the role of a/r/tographer and using my skills as a dramatist, I artistically planned each of the twelve workshops, trained the participating teacher to lead students within the dramatic structure and activities, observed individual and collective student artistic inter/actions within and responses to the drama, recorded the facets of art that the kindergarten children chose to create within the sociodrama using various forms of text, and represented my observations using narrative.

Arts-based methods for data collection included a teacher personal reflection journal, an artist-teacher-researcher reflexive journal, teacher interviews (prior to and at the conclusion of the implementation of the twelve sociodrama workshops), personal correspondence between the teacher and artist-researcher-teacher (including telephone conversations, email, and personal communications), and visual and oral representations by students as observed in sociodramatic workshops.

In addition to exploring individual and collective student experiences through first and third person narrative, a description and analysis of the ten themes emerging from my observations of the workshops and an analysis of the data was discussed. These themes included sociodrama appeared possible with this class of students, some difficulties emerged when implementing the sociodrama with these young children, the teacher's role facilitating the sociodrama went beyond that of the traditional joker role in Theatre of the Oppressed, moments of empathy and care were observed occurring within the drama, the traditional structure of this particular classroom appeared to limit the full sociodramatic possibility, students appeared able to consistently find solutions to concerns within the drama, different levels of student participation and commitment to the sociodrama were observed, leadership roles within students emerged, reoccurring students themes emerged in the sociodrama, and students appeared to experiment with different societal roles.