Application: observing for early literacy learning in a preschool

Application: Observing for Early Literacy Learning in a Preschool Setting

You have been learning about specific materials, strategies, interactions, and activities that help young children expand their vocabularies and develop concepts of print, phonemic awareness, and alphabet knowledge. For the Application this week, you will apply what you have learned as you observe in a preschool setting. Your goal is to expand your awareness and understanding of how teacher interactions, the physical environment, and learning experiences can support early literacy development.

To complete this Application, do the following:

Step 1: Plan and Prepare for the Observation

  • Confirm the observation date and time.
  • Click the link below to download and print out the Early Literacy Observation Worksheet that will help you complete this assignment:

    Early Literacy Observation Worksheet

  • Read through the worksheet.
  • Review the Learning Resources for this week.

Step 2: Observe

Use the questions and checklist on the Early Literacy Observation Worksheet for guidance. Keep these points in mind as you observe:

  • Remember that you are observing at a particular moment in time without the benefit of knowing what has come before, i.e., children’s challenges, strengths and/or circumstances; interactions with teachers and other children; previous learning experiences, etc.. Your goal is to be objective and take in information based on what you observe during this time period.
  • Ask the teacher to help you find a place to observe where you can see and hear clearly but will not distract the children.
  • Change the names of any children and/or adults you identify in your summaries to protect their privacy.
  • Do not share any comments about the children or adults you observe. Remember that you are the learner in this situation.
  • Be sure to thank everyone involved for the opportunity to observe.

Step 3: Reflect

Considering what you have learned in your coursework, summarize the following in a reflection:

  • Strengths of this classroom environment, adult-child interactions, and children’s interactions for supporting early literacy development;
  • If appropriate, specific concerns about the use of developmentally appropriate early literacy learning/instruction/interactions;
  • Any questions would you like to ask the adults you observed; and
  • Suggestions you would make for encouraging early literacy learning based on what you have learned, citing your sources to substantiate your thinking.

Submit your written reflection and your completed Checklist for Print Exposure and Using Materials from the Early Literacy Observation Worksheet. You do not need to submit the Questions page of the Worksheet.

Assignment length: 2–3 pages

Please have this done in 12 hours or less

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