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Focussed Activity Planning


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I'm just posing this question out of interest, really.

 

A colleague has just attended a course run by our Early Years advisory service. As part of it, she was shown a suggested planning sheet for a small group activity, which had the Stepping Stone the activity was aimed at right at the top. The leader then said that they suggested settings planned for each Stepping Stone twice a term.

 

It's not the way we plan, & I felt sure I'd read on here that others plan to the Aspects and record children's achievements against the Stepping Stones. The kind of planning suggested sounds like a bit of a nightmare to me. I would have thought htere were some Stepping Stones you couldn't plan for that way, too.

 

Any comments?

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Hi,sorry can't really help, I've been going round in circles trying to solve this one. I also think you can't plan for every stepping stone and there's too many to plan for each one twice a term. I'm looking forward to the replies you get.

 

Karrie

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Not in preschool but my understanding was that the stepping stones were never intended to be used in the way. They were a suggested route that children might take to reach the ELGs and therefore were learning characteristics. It was always recognised that some children might show all, others some and that they might not be achieved in the given order anyway!

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I have always understood that the stepping stones were descriptive rather than prescriptive. Whatever we write on our planning sheets children will move through the stepping stones at their own pace, not ours.

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Agree with other comments but wonder why this advisor has suggested this number of stepping stones per week.

 

being a bit pedantic, has he/she done her maths?

 

There are a total of 30 Aspects throughout the FSC.

 

without counting the early learning goals, there are, this number of stepping stones;

 

PSE = 33

CLL = 64

Maths = 46

KUW = 28

Phys = 45

Cre = 46

 

a total of 262 stepping stones, so to cover them twice in a term would mean planning for 524 stepping stones( as an average - 13 week term) 40 stepping stones per week :(

 

maybe she means covering ALL the stepping stones, twice within a year???? = 14 stepping stones per week OR over a two year period, just 7 stepping stones per week.

Trouble with this is that children don't 'learn' to order, the only suggestion I can give is to AIM to cover 7 stepping stones which are RELEVENT to the childrens interests, and plan to introduce new concepts / attitudes / skills as they show an aptitude to be ready for them. xD:o:(

 

 

I plan to the Aspects, incorporating the childrens interests and they 'naturally' accomplish the stepping stones ( ie: knowledge, skills and attitudes) at different levels, individually, and at different times of the session, within our continuous provision. My observations show this, but ask me to theoretically describe how to plan for this, all I can say is that the children have a disposition to learn, the stepping stones are developmentally appropriatte to the age range I have and the majority of their learning is spontaneous within an environment that promotes their access to developmental norms.

 

I think it's like if you had the stepping stone - to walk - you can't plan for when a child ( or 'every' child, to walk ( week 3 autumn term) but you can provide an environment, adult interaction to support a child towards this developmental stage.

 

Peggy

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40 stepping stones a week :o Oh my goodness!

 

Surely there must be crossed wires somewhere?

 

We only plan for one stepping stone per area of learning, therefore 6 per week. We do list the Aspect and one of the stepping stones (either cream or blue).

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Thank you for all those replies. It's reassuring to know there are people thinking in a similar way! I can only think my colleague misunderstood to some degree. As you say, Peggy, the figures involved make termly coverage practically impossible!

 

As an aside, the example planning sheet she brought back with the course materials had a section for 'questions', the examples for which were very closed questions. I was on a course on Monday run by the same group of advisors and a SALT, where it was stated that they'd like to remove the 'questions' box from every planning sheet & replace it with 'comments', to improve adults' style of interaction with children and generally to improve communication all round. Yet again an example of conflicting advice. There's a lot to be said for the latter approach, though.

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No you should not plan to do each stepping stone twice in a term! :o

 

My favourite is : Can stop. Now how many children have you seen who couldn't? And you have to plan for that twice a term. It might be they were talking about the Aspects, suggesting that you try to cover each Aspect twice a term. I have seen long term planning which allows for that.

 

I think the key is to concentrate on where the children are and focus your planning on their next steps. If you can show what they already know in your records and that you are planning to extend them appropriately then no-one can can argue with that. Well they can but they'd be wrong :D .

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