Graduate Research Papers


Open Access Graduate Research Paper


The intent of this qualitative research is to gain knowledge and understanding of the impact a genial/eclectic environment may have upon creativity and skillful problem solving. Upon invitation from Benedicte Riis, a well-known Danish educator, composer, author, musician, and presenter in Denmark, Bulgaria, Norway, and the United States; I embarked on a trip to Ebeltoft, Denmark in May of2000 to study her pedagogy. My desire was to compare the methodologies, philosophies, and classroom environments of Benedicte's Tante Andante Hus in Denmark with Franklin Elementary School in Council Bluffs, Iowa. My professors at the University of Northern Iowa encouraged me to prepare a series of questions that could be asked about an object that students would most likely be unable to identify. The object of discovery was a peccary skull. The twenty interviews (ten in Denmark and ten in the U.S.A.) were conducted in environments where freedom of thought and exploration were encouraged. The students interviewed were four to six years of age, and there were equal numbers of female and male subjects in each population group. Parental/guardian permission was granted. I employed the same procedures and standards in both countries. Answers were recorded on audio tape and analyzed to ascertain if the genial/eclectic environment these students were accustomed to would aid in the art/science of problem solving and creativity.

Year of Submission


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Education


Department of Curriculum and Instruction


Division of Gifted Education

First Advisor

Sharon E. Smaldino (for Barbara O'Donnell)


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Date Original


Object Description

1 PDF file (25 leaves)



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