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Observations -pre-school Children


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Hi all, just wondering how many observations are being carried out on average over a term. We are a 39 place each session nursery and I have just taken over as the teacher. We do flex hours and so it is all very tricky. With up to 80 children to observe track etc and some staff going overboard on incidentals and highlighting objectives, it just seems like we are writing the same thing in too many different places! We do one focussed ob, then 10 incidentals per half term. On top of all assessments and tracking it's all too much and the staff are constantly behind with their learning journeys or some go overboard and it is a mass of photos and a million obs which don't actually tell you anything, everything turns out to be partial evidence. Before I go a bit bonkers changing a very complicated system I would like to know what others are doing!

Thanks :o

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Quality not quantity: encourage just capturing the unexpected or unknown outcome. Linking obs to your Look listen and note assessment criteria in your planning works well to focus what people write. Also emphasise evidence is also the known not just the recorded.

 

Cx

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I work in a 52 place Nursery with a max of 26 at any one time with two members of staff. We also do flexible entitlement. I don't have a set number of observations per term or half term I just try to ensure that everyone has around about the same number BUT as others have posted, relevant obs not just for the sake of it! PS as teacher I do feel that it is my place to update learning journey books but it is very time consuming trying to keep on top of them!!

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Billy as a teacher in a nursery you probably have an NNEB or level 3 NVQ (so qualified) staff member working with you and I am sure they could update their own learning journeys!

 

In our nursery we have key children to an extent and we each have learning journeys we keep up to date.

 

My opinion is that this is not soley a teachers job.

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Hear! hear! the very conversation I was having with staff today ! There is no point in writing an observation 'for observations sake'!

 

 

How bizarre - I had this same conversation and used the same words!

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Billy as a teacher in a nursery you probably have an NNEB or level 3 NVQ (so qualified) staff member working with you and I am sure they could update their own learning journeys!

 

In our nursery we have key children to an extent and we each have learning journeys we keep up to date.

 

My opinion is that this is not soley a teachers job.

Yes, especially as our staff get paid level 4 and receive ppa time too! Had a conversation with my head who can see where I am coming from and so it is up to me to tread carefully when at our nursery staff meeting but clarify meaningful obs and better time management! Our key worker groups are used solely as organisation purposes and I consider myself responsible for ALL of the children especially in tracking , assessment, SEN etc.

 

Thank you for your replies

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How bizarre - I had this same conversation and used the same words!

I think we might have been twins in a former life.

Just realised you responded to my message on SK124 ( I don't go on the forum I just get everything sent to my email address)

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I think we might have been twins in a former life.

Just realised you responded to my message on SK124 ( I don't go on the forum I just get everything sent to my email address)

 

haha - what a good plan!

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Is it not the case that you observe something when you observe it. I have never thought about numbers of observations and couldn't tell you how many we do if you asked. In my setting, which is 26 place with 70 children attending, we just capture learning stories and 'wow' moments, i.e. when they have moved on a stage, or met a new learning criteria. Some times I may observe a child lots of times over a short period of time, but at other times obs may be a bit thin on the ground. However, this is in line with children's development which is not usually a strictly linear process.

 

It also depends what you are calling an observation. If you mean you sit down and plan to observe a child because it is their turn, I have always found when attempting to do this, this is the moment when they sit in a chair and do very little for their allotted half an hour.

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I worry about staff members being given 'quotas' of observations to do for each child.

 

I once witnessed a practitioner write half term's worth of observations for her key children in one afternoon. :o

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