UNIT 137 5.1, 5.2 & UNIT 139 2.1
At Playgroup we use:
* Record books
* General observations and note taking
* Various observational techniques e.g. time/event sampling * Development books
* Progress reports
* Parent meetings
to help us achieve a high level of care for every child and to ensure we are meeting their needs. The pastoral carers are responsible for monitoring the children within their groups and recording events, behaviour and development. Twice a year the pastoral carers are required to transfer this knowledge from note-taking, observations, record books, assessments of the children they care for, onto ‘progress reports’ for the parents to receive.
“Sound reflection on the observations we make not only enhances professional practise, but also aids our understanding of children.” (Advanced Early Years 2nd Ed: I Macleod-Brudenell & J Kay:Pg328:2008)
We sit together and discuss each child and ensure we have accurate and up-to-date details to add onto the progress report. Any concerns are dealt with on a daily basis and are not collected to discuss just twice a year.
“A primary purpose of observation is to record in order to inform our response to the needs of children.” (Advanced Early Years 2nd Ed: I Macleod-Brudenell & J Kay:Pg328:2008)
The pastoral carers are then able to take time to sit and write a short report for the child, of which a copy is given to the parents and a copy is stored within the child’s file at playgroup. The parents are also invited to come along and meet with their child’s pastoral carer before the report is sent home.
Observations and assessments of the children within our care may be required for the following reasons:
* Concerns about a child’s behaviour and/or development * Routine assessments (starting at playgroup, leaving playgroup) * Structured assessments in cases of special needs
* Assessments for purposes of a case conference or court
* Students for learning purposes
* Assist with planning our curriculum
* To assist with planning IPP’s (Individual Play Plans)
“Observation is a diagnostic tool, confirming capability or progress at a point in time. It is a means of unobtrusively collecting potentially rich information about children’s development.” (Advanced Early Years 2nd Ed: I Macleod-Brudenell & J Kay:Pg329:2008)
At playgroup we are aware of the following, but may only use a few within our setting:
Observation: Observations can be taken inside or outside and at different times of the day and within different areas of the setting. They record what the child is doing in a subjective way, enabling you to support children's development / be aware of their current stage of development? It's most appropriate to use this method when a child's development is causing concern.
“Observations should be as objective, valid and reliable as possible; and conclusions should not be drawn from one observation only.” (Special Issues in Childcare:M O’Hagan & M Smith:Pg37:1995)
Information from colleagues and carers: Parents/carers who know the child and colleagues expertise are invaluable, especially when planning for social and academic success for pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities. If we are concerned about child's development it's good to ask/share information. We also share information such as a parent pops in to explain they're concerned their child might be feeling a little poorly one morning, a colleague lets you know how they saw a child achieve a milestone in their development.
“Your data should be discussed with appropriate persons and parents, compared, cross-checked and further assessments done where necessary.” (Special Issues in Childcare:M O’Hagan & M Smith:Pg39:1995)
Assessment framework: It is the way in which a child is assessed to decide whether they have any particular needs and what these...