ChildCare Education Institute® (CCEI), an online child care training provider dedicated exclusively to the early care and education workforce, is proud to introduce CUR135: Introduction to Assessment to the online child care training course catalog.
Humans are constantly collecting information from the environment, making judgments, forming opinions, and basing their decisions on that information. In the early childhood environment, assessment is the ongoing process of gathering and documenting evidence of learning. Assessment is not synonymous with testing. Instead, assessment is closer in meaning to the word measurement.
At its best, assessment refers to the way teachers measure student progress, strengths, and needs. With this knowledge, teachers can make informed, evidence-based decisions about curriculum and instruction. In the early care and education (ECE) environment, effective assessment is not about giving a final grade or determining whether a child can recall information. Assessment plays an essential and distinct role in ECE, where individualized learning is the focus. Assessment is a long-term and ongoing process. In other words, a single assessment activity or observation tells us very little. Instead, observing and tracking progress, bit by bit, over time, creates a meaningful picture of a child′s developmental journey.
Early childhood is a challenging period to assess because the rate of growth is quite rapid. Children of the same age can exhibit wide variations in development. Also, growth is highly influenced by environmental factors, such as health and nutrition, prior experiences, family interactions, culture, and access to quality child care. The value of assessment extends beyond simply knowing what children can and cannot do. That is incredibly important information, but it is what educators do with this information that is the most valuable aspect of assessment in early learning.
The main goal of assessment is to inform decisions related to teaching practices, classroom environments, and curriculum planning. There may be some value to designing and implementing an activity without considering the needs and abilities of the children. But consider how much more valuable the activity would be if teachers could tailor expectations, interactions, and materials based on the needs of the children in the group.
In this course, participants will be introduced to elements of effective assessment in early childhood education. Participants will gain an understanding of what early childhood assessment looks like and why it is so important for promoting development and curriculum planning. Best practices related to gathering assessment data will be covered, as well as recommendations for implementing a comprehensive assessment system.
“Assessment is an ongoing process that requires a multipronged approach, flexibility, and close attention to detail,” says Maria C. Taylor, President of CCEI. “Besides maintaining a safe, nurturing environment and providing developmentally appropriate learning opportunities, assessing children′s skills and needs is a top job responsibility for early childhood professionals.”
CUR135: Introduction to Assessment is a two-hour, beginner-level course and grants 0.2 IACET CEU upon successful completion. Current CCEI users with active, unlimited annual subscriptions can register for professional development courses at no additional cost when logged in to their CCEI account. Users without subscriptions can purchase child care training courses as block hours through CCEI online enrollment.
For more information, visit www.cceionline.edu or call 1.800.499.9907, prompt 3, Monday – Friday, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. EDT
ChildCare Education Institute, LLC
ChildCare Education Institute® provides high-quality, distance education certificates and child care training programs in an array of child care settings, including preschool centers, family child care, prekindergarten classrooms, nanny care, online daycare training and more. Over 150 English and Spanish child care training courses are available online to meet licensing, recognition program, and Head Start Requirements. CCEI also has online certification programs that provide the coursework requirement for national credentials including the CDA, Director and Early Childhood Credentials. CCEI, a Council for Professional Recognition CDA Gold Standard™ training provider, is accredited by the Distance Education Accrediting Commission (DEAC), is recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) and is accredited as an Authorized Provider by the International Accreditors for Continuing Education and Training (IACET).