This report will look at Observations within a Haringey Early Years setting and on one Child. I will make five various observations over a period of time. I will examine the observations through elements of her development and learning’s and how my findings can support this learning. I will also discuss and analysis the observation techniques focusing on theoretical theories and I will focus on the six areas of learning and development. Introduction
DCSF (2007) describes observations as the process of watching children in our care, listening to them and taking note of what we see and hear. Observations have become an important part of the Early Years Foundation Stage and are now statutory requirement for all settings. These are to be carried out regularly either spontaneous or planned thoroughly. ‘Observation should be both formal (planned) but much of it will be informal (spontaneous) carried out as you work with the children’ (DCSF, 2007).
From these observations, practitioners can then take into consideration what they are telling us, and provides a foundation and starting point in the planning process. ‘All planning starts with observing children in order to understand and consider their current interests, development and learning (dfes, 2008). Practitioners should also take into consideration the sensitivity of the information disclosed in documents and who their audience is especially the parents. ‘Providers must undertake sensitive observational assessment in order to plan to meet young children’s individual needs.’ (DCSF, 2008).
Observations are essential to a child’s learning and development, and part of the practitioners’ role especially as a key person. ‘Practitioners’ observations of children help them to assess the progress which children are making. Observations help practitioners to decide where children are their stages of learning and plan what to do. This is an essential part of daily practice in any setting, regardless of the age of the baby or child.’ (Dcsf:11, 2008).
To enable an effective practice within the EYFS, four themes are used to guide practice and practitioners. Observations, assessment and planning come under the theme ‘enabling environment’ within the EYFS principle. Enabling environments ensures that the environment plays an important role in supporting a child’s learning and development. ‘The commitments are focused around observation, assessment and planning; support for every child; the learning environment; and the wider context – transitions, continuity, and multi-agency working’. (Dcsf ,2008:9).
Every child is unique as with the Every Child Matters (ECM). When observations are made, it is important to acknowledge and value each child’s home language and cultural background. This ensures they feel safe in their surroundings. ‘Practitioners should value linguistic diversity and provide opportunities for children to develop and use their home language in their play and learning. This is part of the respect for each child’s cultural background that is central in all early year’s provision.’ (DCSF, 2008: 36).
In a recent research as part of the REPEY project showed the importance of observations. The REPEY project main aim was to identify the most effective pedagogy used within the Foundation Stage, supporting children’s learning and development through skills, knowledge and attitudes. Siraj- Blatchford et al, 2002 states that ‘The more knowledge the adult has of the child, the better matched their support and the more effective the subsequent learning.’ However, it is essential that there is ongoing support and communication with the...