PART 4 of “Education for All”
A Guide to the Charts & Questionnaires Adapted from Education for All And Complementary to It
These charts and adapatations are free. All I ask is that I be given credit for my work. Feel free to modify to fit your needs.
There are a number of charts in this post. They divide into the following categories:
USEFUL FOR COLLECTING INFORMATION WHILE IN THE CLASSROOM
These are templates for listing student names and recording information on two categories. If you have electronic copies you can enter the students’ names and will have a template you can reuse for other categories. If you don’t have electronic copies, you will have to photocopy and enter the students’ names as well as the categories each time you use them.
I have created the templates for classes of 23, 27 and 36. I hope no one has more than this number in their classes. I have found that it is easier to collect information using the classroom seating plan as alphabetical lists slow me down. However the template is useful in the absence of a seating plan or if you are marking a stack of assignments.
USEFUL FOR CREATING A PROFILE FOR EACH CHILD
These are as detailed as the charts in Education for All, except that I have shortened sentences and used abbreviations. I imagine that for many of the categories you will end up putting a tick or a level, only writing a note where a child shows either difficulty or abilities that need recording. I hope these will prove useful in writing report cards or IEPs.
The questionnaires are not professionally created. The questionnaire for students is suitable for the older grades. Teachers of primary grades will need to modify them considerably. If you do not assign homework, you will need to cut out a lot of questions. Feel free to modify for your class. Please let me know how well they work and what difference your modifications have made. Suggestions and comments are welcome. Sharing your versions is even more welcome.
I am going to try to create a key, especially applying attribution theory AKA locus of control AKA who does a student attribute success or failure to. That may take even longer but will probably be useful. In the meantime, a quick skim of key answers will probably give you a reasonable picture.
Learning skills cover a wide range even within each of the nine parameters. I have found it useful to reduce the range by combining some skills. It still leaves a great deal to assess per child. Some teachers meet this challenge by only evaluating a few skills a term.
I prefer to look at the not-satisfactory to excellent on the report card as the equivalent of ministry levels 1 to 4; the first day of school, I give all my students a level three – good – on the assumption that children whose learning skills are above or below ministry expectations will quickly catch my eye. This works particularly well if I am using Excel to keep track. Most days I have an observation to jot down beside at least one child’s name (a date stamp is useful here, especially if you are using the classroom plan). After a couple of months, I check for children who have no comments on my record. I make it a point to monitor these children carefully because it is often the students we do not notice who slip between the cracks.
The disadvantage of this system is that in first term, some children may end up with higher marks in some learning skills than they normally would. One or two may be miffed in the first term at not getting the excellent they got in the preceding year, but by and large the system works.
USEFUL FOR CREATING A CLASS PROFILE
These are simply charts from Education for All to use the information from the children’s profiles to summarise in a class profile.
USEFUL FOR PLANNING FOR A CHILD HAVING DIFFICULTY
The idea here is to help you quickly identify the key problems a child is having and note how you intend to deal with them. Education for All in Chapter 8 has outlined a number of useful strategies and you probably have hundreds more up your sleeve. By circling the problems you have identified and jotting down strategies you are considering using, you have a record of what you identified and the strategies you have considered and used.
They should also be useful for creating an IEP and writing the child’s report card.
USEFUL FOR TRACKING THE PROCESS FOR GETTING MORE HELP FOR A CHILD
Learning Difficulties Tracking Chart (6 pages)
One of the most difficult things in a very busy school year is keeping track of what happened when. These sheets are intended to help you keep track of the in school and out of school team meetings that will occur in the process of getting a child identified as exceptional. It is easy to forget to bring samples of a child’s work or remember the sample you brought last time or who promised to do what last time.
They will also remind you the things you need to do to be well prepared, so it can serve as a checklist, too. I have used the back of the envelope method but later on, I am not sure what my notes were referring to. This way, the teacher can circle, cross out or write the minimum and stay focussed on the real job, the meetings and what is best for the students.
These sheets are intended to help the classroom teacher track what is happening. They are intended to be a personal record. If you think you may be expected to hand them in, then keep a second copy for your personal comments and questions and photocopy the official copy for your records, too.
There are two versions: the six page version and the short (4 page version). Both are set up so you can print up one tier and the teacher’s reflections at a time. They don’t run into each other.
SUGGESTIONS AS TO HOW TO ORGANISE THESE
You will need a profile for each child and one for the classroom no matter what. There are two ways of storing them so they are close at hand. One is a binder and the other is top of desk files. I prefer the latter as I don’t like snapping binders open and shut. I do like having this kind of information easily accessible for putting notes away and accessing it for the administrator who will inevitably have an urgent question in the middle of a class. Ideally, each child will have their own file folder so you don’t get information mixed up; the folders will hold, at a minimum:
The child’s profile for each subject
The child’s questionnaire
The parent’s questionnaire
Dated samples of work as appropriate
I find it useful to dump any notes from home, notes on behaviour (good & bad) and anything else pertaining to the child as the term rolls on. It is amazing how much you can forget over a couple of months. Of course, if it becomes necessary, you will add Identifying (Subject) Challenges & Strategies to Help and Learning Difficulties Tracking Chart and anything else which will help you identify challenges and design strategies to meet them.
A folder for the class profile will also be needed and again any notes concerning the class as a whole can be popped in, too. The class profile might prove helpful to a supply teacher, too. Supply teachers often have some insightful things to say.
For More Information
Education for All: The Report of the Expert Panel on Literacy and Numeracy Instruction for Students With Special Education Needs, Kindergarten to Grade 6, 2005