ECE 210: Observation and Assessment in ECE Programs

Course Description

This course is designed to provide an overview of observation and assessment of children in the early childhood classroom, specific to children who are between the ages of 0-5.  Students will learn the purpose and methods of observation and assessment in the early childhood setting and will come to understand NAEYC Guidelines for assessment of young children in early childhood settings.  Students will also learn about state guidelines for early learning. During this course, students will explore the many and varied types of observation tools and will come to understand the integral role these assessment methods play in the cycle of intentional teaching and family involvement.  (3 credits)

Prerequisites

  • ECE 101: Introduction to Early Childhood Education
  • ECE 217: The Exceptional Learner
  • ECE 247: Child Development: Birth to Eight

Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs)

Students who successfully complete this course will be able to:

 SLOs

NAEYC Professional Preparation Standards

1

Describe basic developmental principles that are being used as a basis for creating learning environments for young children.

NAEYC 1c

2

Communicate understanding of the goals, benefits, and uses of assessment including its use in development of appropriate goals, curriculum, and teaching strategies for young children.

NAEYC 3a

3

Engage in guided practice with a particular focus on classroom observation.

NAEYC 3a

4

Identify the various uses of assessment.

NAEYC 3a

5

Explain how assessment may be used in positive ways; explain how inappropriate assessment may harm children and their families.

NAEYC 3a

6

Plan and implement research-based knowledge and demonstrate competence in observation, documentation, including the use of current appropriate assessment tools to gather and share information with families and professional colleagues.

NAEYC 3b

7

Observe children showing objectivity, fairness, and absence of bias.

NAEYC 3c

8

Identify the intended uses of assessment including observation, documentation and other appropriate assessment tools and approaches, including the use of technology in documentation, assessment, and data collection.

NAEYC 3c

9

Explain the value and importance of practicing responsible assessment to promote positive outcomes for each child.

NAEYC 3d

General Education Outcomes (GEOs)

Please check the applicable GEOs for this course, if any, by outcomes at GEO Category Search, or by subject area at GEO Discipline Search.

Course Activities and Grading

Assignments

Weight

Discussions (5 discussions)

25%

Assignments (11 observation assignments)

55%

Reflections (4 reflections)

20%

Total

100%

Required Textbooks

Additional Course Materials

Course Schedule

Week

NAEYC Professional Standards

Course Topics

Readings / Assignments

1

1,2,3,4,5,6,7

Introduction: Observation and Assessment

  • The role of observation
  • Becoming a skilled observer
  • Planned and/or Spontaneous observations
  • The role of documentation
  • Objective versus subjective
  • Recognizing biases
  • Ethics guidelines
  • Closing the achievement gap
  • Process versus structural quality
  • The role of the teacher
  • High quality practices
  • Measuring high quality  

Readings and/or Videos:

  • Read Course syllabus
  • Read Week 1 Lecture
  • Read Peterson and Elam, Chapter 1: Observation and Assessment: The Key to Intentional Teaching
  • Read Peterson and Elam, Chapter 2: Quality Counts
  • Read: What is observing?

Assignments:

  • Discussion
  • Observation Assignment 1
  • Reflection
  • Familiarize yourself with the online training site.
  • Organize observation notebook.

2

1,2,3,4,5,6,7

Developing Skills to Observe

  • Gathering baseline data
  • Understanding the child
  • A beginning look at observation methods, tools and techniques
  • Objective writing in observation

Readings and/or Videos:

  • Read Week 2 lecture
  • Read Peterson and Elam, Chapter 3: Using Observation Methods, Tools and Techniques to Gather Evidence
  • Watch: About the participants

Assignments:

  • Discussion
  • Observation Assignment 2

3

1,2,3,4,5,6,7

Analyzing Observations

  • Using positive language
  • Words to avoid in writing observations
  • Descriptive writing in observations
  • Analyzing observations: How and when to analyze

Readings and/or Videos:

  • Read Week 3 Lecture
  • Read ‘Positive Language’
  • Read ‘Analyzing Observations’
  • Watch Video.

Assignments:

  • Discussion
  • Observation Assignment 3
  • Reflection

4

1,2,3,4,5,6,7

Methods of Observation

  • The purpose of monitoring and screening young children
  • Public policies regarding inclusion
  • Event Sampling
  • Running Records
  • Anecdotal Records
  • Checklists and Rating Scales
  • Temperament

Readings and/or Videos

  • Read Week 4 Lecture
  • Read Peterson and Elam, Chapter 4: The Purpose, Process and Practice of Monitoring, Screening and Evaluation
  • Read: ABC Event Sampling Methods
  • Read ‘Running Records’
  • Read ‘Anecdotal Records’
  • Read: ‘Temperament in Early Childhood’
  • Checklists and Rating Scales
  •  Watch Video

Assignments:

  • Discussion
  • Observation Assignments (4-8) (due at the end of week 5)

5

1,2,3,4,5,6,7

Methods of Observation (cont.)

  • Continuation of week 4 work
  • Individual check-ins with instructor

Assignments:

  • Check in with Instructor regarding Observation assignments
  • Submit Week 4 and 5 observation assignments (4-8)

6

1,2,3,4,5,6,7

Social Emotional and Moral Development

  • What is curriculum?
  • Benefits of meaningful curriculum
  • Teacher’s role
  • Planning cycle
  • Assessing moral development

Readings and/or Videos

  • Read Week 6 Lecture
  • Read Peterson and Elam, Chapter 5: How to Plan Effective and Meaningful Curriculum
  • Read: Updating Moral Development Theory
  • Watch Video

Assignments:

  • Discussion
  • Observation Assignments (9 & 10)) (due at the end of week 7)

7

1,2,3,4,5,6,7

Motor Skills and Cognitive Development

  • Documentation boards
  • Assessing children’s development
  • Family conferences
  • Assessing language and literacy
  • Assessing play

Readings and/or Videos

  • Read Week 7 Lecture
  • Read Peterson and Elam, Chapter 6: Using Documentation and Assessment to Communicate with Families
  • Read: The Early Catastrophe
  • Read: The Play Observation Scale

Assignments:

  • Discussion
  • Submit Week 6 and 7 observation assignments (9 & 10)
  • Reflection

8

1,2,3,4,5,6,7

ECERS

  • Program Evaluations
  • Rating Scales

Readings and/or Videos

  • Read Chapter 8 Lecture
  • Read ‘Early Childhood Rating Scale Third Edition’

Assignments:

  • Discussion
  • Observation assignment 11
  • Reflection
  • Upload Final Portfolio to VIA  

COSC Accessibility Statement

Charter Oak State College encourages students with disabilities, including non-visible disabilities such as chronic diseases, learning disabilities, head injury, attention deficit/hyperactive disorder, or psychiatric disabilities, to discuss appropriate accommodations with the Office of Accessibility Services at OAS@charteroak.edu.

COSC Policies, Course Policies, Academic Support Services and Resources

Students are responsible for knowing all Charter Oak State College (COSC) institutional policies, course-specific policies, procedures, and available academic support services and resources. Please see COSC Policies for COSC institutional policies, and see also specific policies related to this course. See COSC Resources for information regarding available academic support services and resources.