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Narrative and dialogical dimensions of »Orff-Schulwerk«

Konstanca Zalar (2014) Narrative and dialogical dimensions of »Orff-Schulwerk«. PhD thesis.

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    “Orff-Schulwerk” as elementary form of music-movement education, the implementation of which is conditioned by group work, enables not only progress in areas of musical development but also acquisition of music-language communication skills. Based on assertion that it originates deep in a person's inner experiencing, Orff (2002b) calls this music language “primeval music”. The aim of this doctoral thesis is to describe the influence of the narrative paradigm and the theory of dialogue to musical language as enabled by “Orff-Schulwerk”. The study involved a group of children from the first three grades of primary school. The lessons they attended were designed as extra-curricular activity. As the teacher of these children I took into account the fact, in line with the defined research questions, that “Orff-Schulwerk” takes place in interaction between myself and the participating children. In order to achieve the defined objectives within this relation, I envisaged my research as a phenomenological case study. This research method made it possible to collect data which enabled insight into experiencing of all participants and, in the next phase, through qualitative analysis, led to formation of adequate categories and learning about relations among them. In order to ensure the maximum objectivity of the phenomenological study, the research plan exceeded the boundaries of the Slovenian cultural environment. To this end, a multicultural qualitative study was conducted, involving foreign teachers practicing “Orff-Schulwerk”. Their contribution deepened the insight into the subject researched and highlighted those elements which do not depend on cultural environment. The result of the overall study is a grounded theory which explicates the narrative and dialogical processes of everyone taking part in the “Orff-Schulwerk” process. The findings show that the acquisition of musical language by engaging in quality interpersonal relationships is a lengthy procedure during which elements of narrativity and dialogicality constantly intertwine. Even though this music is elementary, analyses show that children have yet to learn it. This finding contradicts Orff’s supposition which describes “Orff-Schulwerk” as uniformity of speech, singing, movement and instrument playing which is the primeval state that stems from the child itself as part of the child’s being (Orff, 2002a). The research findings also indicate that learning is influenced by the attitude of teachers who with their anticipated expectations interfere with the “Orff-Schulwerk” pedagogical process. The results of the phenomenological case study, together with the results of the multicultural qualitative study, confirmed that differences between various cultural environments do not influence “Orff-Schulwerk” teachers’ attitude and do not cause differences in their activity as teachers, however they show presence of emphatic attitudes of teachers towards everybody in the group and uncovers the fact that “Orff-Schulwerk” teachers approach teaching with their own need to communicate. One important result of the study is also the finding that in the pedagogical process, working with instruments used by participants in “Orff-Schulwerk” serves to express personal musical feelings and as such allows individual influence in the process of communication. This doctoral thesis contributes to recognition that “Orff-Schulwerk” is an example of experiential music teaching and learning which, with a stimulating environment, enables promotion of creativity, innovation, and, in particular, acquisition of social competences and awareness of one’s own cultural heritage. It affirms musical language as a type of non-verbal communication in which participants develop critical thinking, problem-solving skills and the abilities to take on responsibility and to manage emotions.

    Item Type: Thesis (PhD thesis)
    Keywords: “Orff-Schulwerk”, narrative paradigm, theory of dialogue, first-person experience, non-verbal communication, music education
    Number of Pages: 229
    Language of Content: Slovenian
    Mentor / Comentors:
    Mentor / ComentorsIDFunction
    izr. prof. dr. Barbara Sicherl KafolMentor
    izr. prof. dr. Urban KordešComentor
    Link to COBISS: http://www.cobiss.si/scripts/cobiss?command=search&base=50126&select=(ID=10009161)
    Institution: University of Ljubljana
    Department: Faculty of Education
    Item ID: 2077
    Date Deposited: 24 Mar 2014 07:02
    Last Modified: 24 Mar 2014 07:02
    URI: http://pefprints.pef.uni-lj.si/id/eprint/2077

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