The Importance of Assessments

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08/02/20 Education Reference this

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1. The word assessment means the collection, review and the use of information about child’s learning and development. There are several reasons ways a teacher will use an easement in the classroom setting. The following are some reasons why.

To find out if the student’s learning. To assess how well the whole class is doing. Or if the whole grade is struggling with the learning and content. To assist in the determination of learning problems with a certain child in the classroom. To see if a child is eligible for the gifted program. One of the major reasons to use evaluation in the classroom, is to help determine if a child is ready to move to the next grade level. Assessment for learning and development is “the process of gathering and analyzing information about what children know, can do and understand. It is part of an ongoing cycle that includes planning, documenting and evaluating children’s learning.”

(Deewr, 2009). It is also very important to provide data for families and other local and

state educational programs. Family’s play a vital role in their child’s learning and development. It is important for the early childhood teacher to keep track of each student’s progress of indoor and outdoor play, their social emotional, language and cognitive development. As early childhood providers, we are the first people that encounter children regarding within the first few years in school. It is so important to notice if the young child is having speech, learning or behavior issues. If you do notice these problems with the child, it is important to get them addressed with the proper professional. So, a formal observation can be done to determine if a further diagnosis needs to be done.

2. Developmental Assessments

Assessment allows professions to use evidence to identity what children already know, and what they can do and if they are ready to learn. This is a great way to monitor the progress and achievements of the children, over a time fame. Developmental Assessments is a great way to make decisions and experiences to advance learning and development in response to the child’s individual strengths, abilities, and interests. This assessment will also identify any child who may benefit from additional support. The main reason for this assessment is to determine if the child has any challenges in there developmental domains. They could be one or many of the following, Cognitive, Social, Emotional, Language, Physical Development and Adaptive behavior such as self-care and self-direction. This assessment will determine the following delays:

·Intellectual Delay- it will identify and diagnose the severity of the intellectual

impairment, by the impact of meeting or having the developmental milestones. Some areas to look at when a developmental delay is present is the following:

·Motor- look at both the fine motor skills and large motor skills. For example, is the child grasping for an item or pointing at the item. Gross motor skills are the children able to hop, jump, run or climb.

·Self-Direction- is the ability to control themselves, do they have the ability to control their emotions or do they make frequent emotional outburst.

·Self-Care- are they able to feed themselves. At the ago around 3 and 3 1/2 years old, most children are potty trained. Does the child need assistance in helping them remove their clothing to go to the bathroom. Are they able to remember to wash their hands after they go to the bathroom.

·Social Skills- do they show the skills that they are able to get along with others. Are they unable to share and negotiate with their peers. Do they become overly aggressive when they do not get their way. Do they become overly aggressive such as having tantrums and become so irate with aggression with even the mildest stressors.

·Communication- are they able to use their speaking and listening skills to convey messages to one another and school staff members.

3. The process of conducting the assessment

When preforming an assessment, it requires professionals to collect information about

the children’s learning and development. The professional will be using a wide range of strategies and assessment tools.

The following are some common assessment tools.

a. Observations-some examples of observations can be anecdotal records and running records. Anecdotal notes are concise, objective narratives about a student in the classroom. The notes are about behaviors, skills, attitudes and performance. Anecdotal notes must contain factual information about a significant event, behavior or learning outcome.

·Running records- this type of assessment would fail under the reading assessment. It is a read aloud assessment and is part of an observation. The goal of this assessment is to see if the student is using strategies that are taught in the classroom and to identify if the student needs to advance to a different reading level. One great way to observe a child is during free time and play time. The teacher can give the child a particular task and see if they can perform that task. “Just looking at children does not guarantee seeing or understanding, however effective observation calls for identifying a particular situation, problem or progress toward an identified goal you are interested in assessing.” (Solderman, Gregory, & McCarty, 2005).

b. Having conversations and interviews with the children. This can be done when a behavior issue arises. Children are fighting or hitting each other.

c. Using samples of the children’s work. For example, having the children draw self-portraits of themselves in the beginning of the school year and then at the end of the school year. Then you can compare the two. This will show the students growth int there fine motor skills and their cognitive growth. Attribute naming is another assessment for comparing work samples of older preschool and kindergarten children from over a time period. For example, show a picture of something that is familiar to the children on the smartboard. Big Bird or Elmo, then have them label the picture the best to their knowledge. Encourage them to use describing words.

d. Checklist- the checklist will have the milestones in reference to the children’s abilities, such as movement, hand and finger skills, language and social development. If the child is showing behavior issues, then a checklist can be made for that child. The checklist should provide if the child is displaying extreme aggressive, fearful or they are showing timid behavior, lack of self-care abilities and is unable to separate from their parents. These are all warring signs that need to be documented so the parents and other professionals can observe the child also. A checklist can also be used for academic achievements in math and reading.

e. Video/Audio recordings.

It’s a great way to catch the children working independently or with others and it gives results of really what is happing. Keep in mind that you will need to have parental consent before filming the children. Having pictures and videos is a great way to show parents and family what kind of learning and interaction is going on in the classroom.

4. Planning and caring out the assessment on teaching

Child development is defined as a culture of the specific group of children, and the interests and abilities of individual children at a specific point in time. When planning out the instructors for the class, you need to think of the following questions. What are the children learning currently? Is the child ready to learn? What is helping them learn? and What is interfering with the learning? As a teacher you will need to know the content that is being taught. The following are basic content for children to learn. It can be arts, language and literacy, mathematics, science, health, fitness and social studies. Content is also goes along with developmental domain: Which are the six areas related to child development, such as learning in aesthetics, affective, cognitive language, physical, and social. When giving out instruction to the children it is very important to include procedures. Which gives the children step by step instructions on how to an activity. For example, writing down the steps on chart paper so some of the children can look at the directions as reference if they happen to fall behind. Or show example to the students on how to perform a task. Because some students are visual learners. It is also important to plan out what the child’s experiences are with a certain topic, and then plan on what is needed to help the children in the class. For example, having the correct materials available for the activity. Next, you will need to act, or implement plans using intentional strategies to ensure that the children’s learning is progressing. It is important to look back on and see what works well for the children and what does not work well for them. Making sure that the children are being supported in the learning process. If something is not working, the consider using other services and supports to help the child achieve in their development.

Effective Assessment- try to use authentic and appropriate approaches. Provide a holistic understanding of each child’s learning and development. Keep in mind that their may be cultural diversity and to incorporate the family and other professionals view

points. Incorporate and use assessments in all aspects of the curriculum. Authentic assessments should take place in environments that are familiar and natural to the Children. Assessments can be informal or more formal, and you can use a variety of tools or strategies appropriate for the purpose. Professionals not only will assess the children’s learning also; they will evaluate the programs and curriculum that is used in the classroom. ”Assessment is defined as the process of collecting data for the purpose of (1) specifying and verifying problems, and (2) making decisions about students”. (Salvia, Ysseldyke, & Bolt, 2012).

5. Communicating with families and other professionals.

Family play an essential role in their child’s learning and development. It is important to

utilize the student’s parents as a valuable source of information. Parents can give the teacher Information regarding their child’s past, cultural backgrounds, temperament and interest and abilities. When meeting with the parents regarding their child, it is important to provide the best possible advice and guidance to give them. Provide them a wide range of sources to help them assess and plan effectively. Especially what their next steps are going to be if their child needs services. As a teacher you can give them guidance, but when it comes down to the parent’s decision on what they want to do for their child. It is always important to have an open understanding that you are available to the family for all their child’s needs. Involve addition professionals in on the conference meetings with the parents. The student may need an IEP, Individualized Education Program made up for them. Therefore, it is so important to have assessments in the classroom, because these assessments can detect different services that a child may need.

Resources:

  • Deewr, Department of Education and Training. (n.d.). Early Years Learning Framework | Department of Education and Training, Australian Government. (2009) P.17 Retrieved from
  • Soderman, A. K., Gregory, K. M., & McCarty, L. T. (2005). Scaffolding emergent literacy: A child-centered approach for preschool through grade 5. Upper Saddle River: Pearson.
  • Salvia, J., Ysseldyke, J., & Bolt, S. (2012). Assessment: In special and inclusive education (12 ed.). Belmont, CA: Cengage Learning.
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