In Early Years (EY), we are often proud to say that assessment, particularly Assessment for Learning (AfL), is something that we do well. With the expectations on how EY practitioners guide and assess children’s learning clearly articulated in the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS), assessment is done primarily in a formative way through ongoing observation and analysis, and should feed directly into planning. Following this idea, this article will explore an individual student case looking at how key ‘principles’, as proposed by Jan Dubiel (2016), manifest and how assessment was used to support this particular student.
Principled Assessment in the Early Years
Dubiel (2016) proposes eight key principles upon which ‘effective’ EY assessment should be based. These principles are useful to consider when approaching assessment in Early Years. Whilst Dubiel’s (2016) work isn’t the first that has attempted to capture the principles of effective assessment (Assessment Reform Group, 2002; Volante, 2006), his work draws from a synthesis of research which is grounded in best practice for EY. For the purpose of this piece I will draw upon three of these principles, reflecting on how they manifested in light of the learning journey of a particular child in my class.