Assessing Infants & Toddlers:Finding Out What They Know Dr. Douglas Bell email@example.com GAYC Annual Conference 2012
What is Assessment• A process for gathering information for making decisions about Infants & Toddlers• Measurement and appraisal of what children know and can do
Marty Lipp of Harlem Children’s Zone• Good Teachers are like good parents…• A good parent “does whatever it takes.” There’s no barriers for a parent. A parent doesn’t say “Oh, my job stops here.” If the child needs it, a good parent tries to supply it. And that’s what we do. We’re constantly assessing what we do and looking at how we can do it better.
Principles That Guide Assessment in ECE• Principle 1: Benefit Children• Principle 2: Be Used for a Specific Purpose• Principle 3: Recognize limitations for young age• Principle 4: Be age appropriate• Principle 5: Be linguistically appropriate• Principle 6: Value Parents
Assessing Infants & Toddlers• Serves infants/toddlers, families, and caregivers• Should be embedded in the developmental tasks, processes, and content of appropriate educational activities − This reduces the need to get data from isolated tests
More Principles• Should use multiple sources of information• Should benefit the child and improve learning• Should involve the child and family• Should be fair for all children• Should be authentic• Should be tailored to a specific purpose and be reliable, fair, and valid for that purpose
NAEYC Requires Assessment• Should be a comprehensive system• Implemented in a thoughtful systematic and documented way• Should connect planning for individual children to assessment• Should balance formal, standardized assessment with informal assessment and direct observation• Should include developmental screening• Results should be shared with those that need to know• Should involve the team• Results should be shared regularly with families
Overview• Give the big picture of the subject• Explain how all the individual topics fit together Screen Parent System GELS Input Direct Docum Reflect Act Observ ent ation
Developing a Comprehensive System• Should use a variety of assessments and observations• Over time and across routines/activities• Use standardized/normed formal assessments (screens)• Use informal observations and samples
Screen• A first look at a child’s development• Identifies the potential for delay• Screening does not provide direct links to curriculum
Screening Best Practices• Contextually relevant• Functionally appropriate• Relationship enhancing• Observationally based
Observe• Regularly• With purpose• Separate objective from subjective info• Select the appropriate tools• Observation reveals trends in behavior that allow you to choose among goals to emphasize
Observation & AssessmentTools • The ounce scale• Anecdotal record • Creative curriculum• Descriptive/interpret for I/T developmental ive continuum• Running record/diary • COR for I/T method • ELAP• Frequency count • Ages & Stages (& S.E.)• Time sampling • DECA• checklist
Connect it to the Standards• GELS• Conduct periodic observations to check for attainment of the standards• From your observations you can infer what standards to work toward• Remember the standards themselves are not an assessment
References• Bentzen, W. (1993). Seeing Young Children: A Guide to Observing and Recording Behavior, 2nd ed. Albany, NY: Delmar.• Cohen, L. & Spensiner, L. (1994). Assessment of Young Children. New York: Longman.• Grace, C. & Shores, E. (1994). The Portfolio and Its Use: Developmentally Appropriate Assessment of Young Children. Little Rock AK: Southern Early Childhood Association.• Gullo, D. (2005). Understanding Assessment and Evaluation in Early Childhood Education, 2nd ed. New York: Teachers College Press.• Helm, J., Beneke, S., & Steinheimer, K. (2007). Windows on Learning: Documenting Young Children’s Work, 2nd ed. New York: Teachers College Press.• Jablon, J., Dombro, A., & Dichtelmiller, M. (1999). The Power of Observation. Washington DC: Teaching Strategies Inc.• Martin, S. (2004). Take a Look: Observation and Portfolio Assessment in Early Childhood, 3rd ed. Toronto: Pearson.• McAfee, O., & Leong, D. (2002). Assessing and Guiding Young Children’s Development and Learning, 3rd ed. Boston, MA: Pearson.• Meisels, S. & Atkins-Burnett, S. (2005). Developmental Screening in Early Childhood: A Guide, 5th ed. Washington DC: National Association for the Education of Young Children.• Mindes, G. (1996). Assessing Young Children, 3rd ed. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson.• Puckett, M. & Black, J. (2008). Meaningful Assessments of the Young Child: Celebrating Development and Learning, 3rd ed. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson.• Wortham, S. (2001). Assessment in Early Childhood Education, 3rd ed. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Merrill Prentice Hall.