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Introduction Good afternoon everyone. Today I’m going to talk to you about the high/scope approach in a childcare setting. I’d like to start off by saying for parents I believe a main concern of theirs at this stage of their child’s life if they are sending their child to a childcare setting is finding the best the setting, approach and childcare workers to suit their child needs. High/Scope was established in 1970 by Dr. David P. Weikart, who started the organization to continue research and program activities Dr. Weikart retired in December 2000 and is now deceased; Dr. Lawrence J.Schweinhart is now the HighScope Foundation’s President.
The name “High/Scope” and its corporate logos are registered trademarks and service marks of the High/Scope Foundation. The high/scope method has being developed over a forty year process it has been shaped by research and while in practice and has been so successful that it is known and used around the world in multiple of childcare settings. For example day care, play groups and primary schools just to name a few. In my opinion the main idea of this approach is that children learn actively independently and naturally while interacting with materials and people.
This approach observes, identifies and helps develop children’s main interest and skills. A point in this approach that I found most interesting was their idea that they don’t want the children’s activities to be thought in an institutional manner and if the children make mistakes they are not viewed as mistakes they are viewed as part of learning. The High/Scope environment helps the children to learn while active. For example a child will learn how to talk to others and develop their speech by being involved in conversation with other children and childcare workers.
The setting has specific interest areas and activities for example the painting area, home area and block area they are clearly defined so there is no confusing for the children of what that certain area is used for. A block area would not have a little play kitchen in it cause that will confuse the children on what the area is used for. Clear containers are in child height shelving units so they are easily accessible to the children. The containers are clearly word and photo labelled; this will help the children learn the connection between labels, words and symbols.
The children will be able to see what they want and get it without having to look through loads of boxes before finding it for example Bryan wants to play with the blue tractor so he goes to the toy area where the shelves are at his visual height looks at the boxes sees the picture with the tractors on it, the words tractor above it and can get it himself without having to get a childcare worker to look for it or go up high and get it for him, he also can return it after he has finished with it.
This encourages the children to practice the Find, Use and Return cycle. The hoped outcome for the children in the setting is that they develop a positive attitude towards themselves and others grow in self-confidence and so on and overall benefit from this approach for their future. ‘A study found that adults at age 40 who had the preschool program had higher earnings, were more likely to hold a job’.
Achieving this requires the right environment, materials, trained childcare workers and a successful partnership between both childcare workers and parents. Parent’s involvement is crucial to the high scope approach. The partnership between the parent and the childcare worker will make it easier for the child to be at ease in the setting and with the staff. The childcare workers and the parent’s partnership approach which keeps an on-going passing of information which in turn keeps both adult carers equally informed.
Childcare workers document and take daily notes of what they have seen, heard and what has happened while the children are in their care. Observations help the childcare workers plan activities for the next day. For example while the children played with the blocks Anne kept on wandering over to the painting area, so at the activity planning meeting it would be suggested we take Anne’s interest of painting and involve it during the day.
Children are assessed daily to observe the level of their development and to see if the activities the children participate in help their development. Children are assessed in ways that the children and adults feel comfortable when information is collected all assessments should provide an educational outcome. The observations are shared with parents at the end of the year and they usually very interested to see how and what their children have been doing.
‘The COR (Child Observation Record) is used to evaluate child progress in High/Scope infant-toddler and preschool programs. The Preschool Program Quality Assessment (PQA) is used to evaluate the quality of the program, focusing on five key areas: learning environment, daily routine, adult-child interaction, and curriculum planning and assessment, and parent involvement. I hoped you enjoyed my presentation. And if you have any question I would be happy to answer them as best as I can. Thank you for listening.