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Mary Lyons


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Mary Lyons is a true Illinoisan and has spent every ounce of her formal learning career – from preschool through Ph.D. – in the Midwestern locale, living in rural settings in central and western regions of the state. She is currently a Visiting Assistant Professor in the Educational Studies department at Knox College. Before her graduate studies, Mary taught in early primary grades for 11 years as a classroom-based practitioner. Her research interests center around daily life in classrooms as teachers encounter and navigate tensions. Specifically, she is interested in what teachers identify as healthy and productive teaching and learning environments; ways that teachers make decisions and adapt to their unique school and classroom contexts; and ways in which teacher preparation programs influence and/or support novice teachers as they transition into the field. Mary's dissertation research was an investigation of teachers' agency when carrying out a play-based kindergarten program in our current era of academic rigor. Quote from Mary: The CREATE program at UIUC provided a foundational support as I explored my own teaching and learning histories and reconciled past educational experiences while journeying toward my aspirations as a scholar.

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