Assessment in Early Childhood

The National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) suggests that early childhood educators make ethical, appropriate, valid, and reliable assessment a central part of all early childhood programs. To best assess young children's strengths, progress, and needs, use assessment methods that are developmentally appropriate, culturally and linguistically responsive, tied to children’s daily activities, supported by professional development, inclusive of families, and connected to specific, beneficial purposes. The purposes of doing assessment are:

  1. making sound decisions about teaching and learning
  2. identifying significant concerns that may require focused intervention for individual children
  3. helping programs improve their educational and developmental interventions.

Early Childhood Curriculum, Assessment and Program Evaluation, 2003.

The Assessment Cycle: 1. Gather Information 2. What does it mean? What do I do next? 3. How are things going? Are we making progress? 4. Putting the pieces together. Reporting out and deciding what should we do next?