Date of Award


Document Type

Thesis - NSU Access Only

Degree Name

Education Specialist


Center for the Advancement of Education


Drama, Dramatics, Language, Language Arts, Music Musical Theater, Self-Concept, Self-Esteem, Theatre, Theatre Arts Theatrics


The problem of the existence of a number of students exhibiting low self-esteem and unacceptable behavior in fourth and fifth grade was addressed by involving a representative sample of the students population in the production of a major musical show. The Piers-Harris Children’s Self-Concept Test (Ellen V. Piers and Dale B. Harris, 1969), an analysis of students’ effort and behavior grades before and after the production, and an analysis of numbers of instances of administrative/ guidance referrals was used to evaluate whether or not involvement in drama would produce improvement in student self-esteem. All students who signed up to audition were used and the group was representative of the population of the fourth and fifth grades. All students were required to do was to participate in the rehearsals and performances of the musical production. This involved learning the music, lines, blocking, cues, prop requirements, and dance routines. The results showed that over 5% of students tested with the Pier-Harris test experienced increases of at least 1 stanine in their self-concept scores. Instances of low scholastic effort scores dropped by 40%; low behavior scores dropped by 52%. Numbers of referrals increased during rehearsals but dropped during the production and after the conclusion of the show. Comments made by parents,. teachers, administrators, and the author's own observations demonstrated that most students showed greater confidence, group involvement, happiness, and participation during and after becoming involved with the show. It was concluded that drama can provide educators with a vehicle to facilitate improvement in student self-esteem, effort, and conduct in the classroom.

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