Theatre as a tool to promote the resilience and well-being of teachers: evaluation of the "Per chi suona il campanello" initiative

“Per chi suona il campanello” (based on the title of Hemingway’s novel “For whom the bell tolls”) is a theatre performance designed in the format of the participatory Forum Theatre (Boal, 2000) by the team of the Cantonal project Linea – focused on teachers’ well-being development (Department of Education, Culture and Sport (DECS), Canton Ticino) – together with the UHT theatre group. The show is part of various continuous training courses for teachers and managers that is intended to stimulate group reflection on the complex interpersonal challenges experienced in school that often affect both individual and collective wellbeing.

Rido / Fotolia

In this perspective, the show presents characters and situations derived from real problematic cases - suitably adapted and made anonymous - observed in the field by the Line project team. For this reason, the situations are a good reflection of the reality of school life. In keeping with forum theatre tradition, the show invites spectators to literally put themselves in the shoes of the different characters struggling with complex, frustrating, but completely realistic interpersonal and communicative problems. The reflexivity triggered by being actively called upon to review, reshape and rethink the words and gestures proposed by the actors as well as the confrontation created among the participants, give this initiative great potential in supporting the well-being and resilience of teachers.

The objective of the evaluation project described here is to systematically explore these potentialities by investigating the outcomes of training intervention at selected vocational schools.


Five theatre-based training sessions will be evaluated. All the sessions will be held mainly in plenary format at vocational schools in the Canton of Ticino in 2017. A total of at least 200 teachers from five different vocational schools are expected to take part.

The evaluation criteria will cover both the outcome-related aspects (e.g. degree of reflective activation felt by teachers, perceived usefulness by teachers and experts such as directors or mediators) and process-related aspects (e.g. development of interactions performed by participants, degree of participation).

Data will be gathered through a combination of different instruments, including

  • Participating observation
  • Questionnaire
  • Semi-structured interviews

Qualitative and quantitative procedures will be used to analyse the data gathered.