Observation and Assessment

Assessment is the ongoing process we use to find out what every child knows and can do. It helps us discover each child’s strengths, skills, interests, and needs so we know how to help every child experience success. Our assessment system also enables us to exchange information with families so, together, we can ensure that your child is progressing.

The assessment system we use does not involve testing children. We learn about children by carefully observing what they do and say as they participate in everyday activities in the classroom. We know that each child is an individual, with different interests, skills, strengths, and needs. The more we learn about each child, the better we can plan experiences that are just right: sufficiently challenging and engaging.

Teaching Strategies GOLD® uses a color-coded system to show the widely held expectations for children from birth through kindergarten.

These color bands appear for each objective to show what step we can expect children to be at for each age group or class/grade.

How Assessment Works

When we say that Teaching Strategies GOLD® online is an authentic, ongoing, and observation-based assessment system, it means we:

  • observe your child during regular, everyday activities;
  • document what we see and hear by taking notes, collecting samples of your child’s drawings and writing attempts, or taking photos, audio recordings, or video clips;
  • exchange information with you to gain a more complete picture of what your child knows and can do;
  • compare the information collected to research-based, widely held expectations for children of similar ages or grades; and
  • use the information to plan experiences that support your child’s learning and meet individual needs, both at home and at school.

Documentation Methods:

 – Anecdotal notes including Objective and focus on what the child does or says that include the location and date observed, direct quotations of language and descriptions of actions.

– Photographs—Take pictures of children’s constructions, artwork, or examples of how they are demonstrating knowledge and skills related to an objective. Label each photo with the date and a brief note that explains the context in which it was taken. When uploading photos to online child portfolios, be sure to include a brief, written explanation of what is taking place in the photo.

 – Video- and audio clips—Keep clips short. Capture just enough information to show an example of what the child knows and can do.

Student Portfolios:

A permanent assessment portfolio will be kept for each child, and passed to the next teacher when a child transitions. These portfolios will not be released to anyone outside St. Peter ECC without written permission from the parent/guardian. Assessment portfolios will contain a variety of items, including anecdotal notes, checklists, photographs, examples of artwork, assessment profiles, and parent-teacher conference forms. It is the responsibility of the Lead Teacher and Assistant Teacher to ensure portfolios are periodically and continuously updated.

*This information was taken from The following information is from Teaching Strategies® Bright Learner A Guide to Teaching Strategies GOLD® Linda C. Whitehead, Ph.D. Vice President, Education and Development, Bright Horizons Family Solutions