Friday, November 13, 2009

Work Sampling

The other day I told you I would tell you more about the Worksampling Online Course Randy and I took the other day. Since I am leaving at noon today to drive 7.5 hours to Pocohantas Arkansas to lead a conference tomorrow, I thought today would be a good day to do that.

One of the requirements of ABC is to document a child's progress through this system . Taking notes on what the children do and say and taking samples of their work allows me to see where each child is and what direction we need to go. For a classroom that is " child led" this information is priceless. In " child led" classrooms, children are not necessarily all " on the same page". I might see through observations that one child is stilll struggling with transitions ( changing from one activity to another ) and another one has not started using explanded language for a variety of purposes. Another advantage of this system is when I pull a class profile I might see that ALL or MOST of the children are lacking some of the science skills. That tells me more about my teaching than it does individual children. So.... I have to start thinking about how to incorporate more science into our day.

This is how I document.

I have a 3 ring binder. There is a checklist of 58 indicators for each child. I try to put atleast one note , quote or other piece of documentation under each one heading such as language and literacy or Math.


One day Katie was playing with the large foam unit blocks. She took two semi circles and put them together and said " look Ms Debbie, I made a circle " This is great critical thinking and math so I took out the binder , found Katies name and wrote exactly what she said under the Math section. Observations are without opinion - only stating the facts. I also took a picture. You may remember it from our journal.

I have three reporting periods for each child a year. The first deadline is today. I made it! WHEW! The state uses this information for data collection to back up why we get the money we do.

If you would like to see more worksampling information you can go to

I know.. I know... again, you thought all we did was play all day. :)

1 comment:

  1. I live in Arkansas...I am also teaching in an ABC program and had to finalize today. I love work sampling because it lets me know where each child biggest problem is organizing how to document..I like your 3 ring binder idea....any other ideas?