There are many methods for monitoring children and young adults. These include: observations, written records, assessments framework, information shared with work colleagues and children’s families, standard measurements.
For Teaching Assistants should be essential understanding first the purpose of the observations to be made as part of their role. In fact, the information recorded has a very high value and need to be shared with the class teacher who will report it to the children’s parents and carers.
The assessments should be made to track the progress of children’s development. There are standard measurements that can be used by practitioners in order to determine the physical and cognitive growth and development of a child. The assessment framework or “assessment triangle” can help understanding whether the children growth and their physical and mental development are progressing at the expected rate for their age.
There are also standard measurements such as school tests and cognitive aptitude tests that can display the children’s academic ability and their skills at retaining taught information and that may be used to compare outcomes between a larger population of same-age children. For example, there are health assessments that can measure head circumference, weight, height, visual and auditory functioning. Educational psychologists may use reasoning tests to assess an intellectual age in contrast to the chronological age.
It is very important to share information with colleagues and parents that enable you to monitor children in the best effective way. Parents and primary carers who know the child and colleagues’ expertise can be invaluable, especially when planning for the social and academic success for children with special educational needs and learning disabilities. When TAs are concerned about a child’s development it is always good to ask and share information.