Tuesday, October 14, 2014

A Special Look at Data Collection from a Guest Teacher, Ms. Stephanie Kramer!

Today, I am welcoming Ms. Stephanie Kramer as a guest blogger to discuss a very important topic and one I am not very strong in...DATA COLLECTION!  

Ms. Kramer has come up with an excellent method to assess all her students in all developmental areas three times a year.  I could not be more proud and excited to share this post as Stephanie was my student teacher four years ago.  She is a phenomenal teacher, and wonderful friend & colleague who so passionate in her work with children.  So without further ado, it is my pleasure to share Ms. Stephanie Kramer’s expertise.

As a new teacher, I needed to create a progress monitoring/data collection system that was quick to administer.  I wanted it to provide valuable and reliable information that was easily read and understood by parents. I was really fortunate to have many, many resources to work from as I pulled my data collection forms together.  I utilized materials from college, the state standards, and various curriculum's that we use: Handwriting Without Tears, Read it Once Again, ZooPhonics, and some aspects of: Creative Curriculum, and High Scopemy Mom, past teachers, co-workers, and anywhere else I get my hands on data collection forms and ideas!  

Initially all of the many, many documents I collected were very overwhelming, but I slowly began to condense, combine, and reformat the stacks of pages to create an organized system that is teacher, student, and parent friendly.  The system works well in our classroom and the best part is it is included in our daily routine. 

First off, the three and four year old Curriculum Based Assessment (CBA) forms. If I had to select one part of my data collection process that I find most useful, this form would be it!  


To gather the data needed to complete each 9 week CBA, we have all the items and manipulatives in a small tote.  Below you can see what types of items we use. 

We have a tote for each quarter so that we know the students have generalized the skills and are not learning to the test. 

As you may have noticed on the CBA forms, all 4 quarters are listed at the top.  We use a new form for each quarter and simply mark which quarter the form is being used for.  This allows my staff and I to quickly compare data and note any changes in student performance, making for very parent friendly forms to share during conferences and meetings.  The goal is that by the end of the year, students will have been exposed to every concept on the CBA form and current levels of performance would be evident based on the students performance and data collected. 

So how do we keep it all organized and provide students with an opportunity to work on target areas on the CBA each day?  We have a morning and afternoon class so we use our school colors to designate between classes.  The morning class has yellow folders and the afternoon class has blue folders.

Each folder contains a sheet protector with the pages only the teacher should write on in the sheet protector.  These pages are our CBA forms and another set of forms I will get to at the end of this post.   

As the students complete their work samples/data collection forms in their data collection folders, we file them  into their portfolios so that the data collection folders stay very organized and student friendly.  In the page protector section, we also have the following forms to collect data in regard to gross motor, fine motor, personal information, body part recognition, name writing, self- portrait drawing and other specific things we track related to the curriculum and programs our district has choose to adopt. 
The front pocket holds pages for the student to work on. They are denoted with a green light as a visual prompt for student to know they need to work on the items in this pocket. 


The back pocket is labeled with a stop sign and contains pages that are to be completed within the quarter when a teacher moves them to the front pocket and the students are ready for them.  This system has been adapted and modified so that every student in our ECSE classroom participates and does so as independently as possible.  


We complete the data collection packet by doing our "folder jobs" as part of our opening routine.  With each student's name and/or photo on their folder, the students are responsible for locating their folder and pencil in our pocket chart and then getting to work.


Choice time is the following activity, which proves to be motivational when implemented in conjunction with our classroom behavior management system that encourages students to always do their best. It also provides my staff and I some time to help individual kids when needed while other students move on to choice time.  

NOTE: Some student worksheets require more one on one time with teachers than others so we'll only place 1 or 2 of those forms in the front pocket each day while other students work on independent forms.  We also support students in working on various concept worksheets during arrival job time, small group centers.

Then as students progress, we incorporate some folder work into our independent work time.  Here is what that looks like in the classroom. 


We have 3 drawers that contain a job for each student and if they need to do a folder job, we simply place a photo of a blue or yellow folder in the drawer.


Please feel free to ask me questions about this system at skramer20@gmail.com!  I've learned so much from reading blogs, observing, and listening to other professionals.  Although this system may not work for you exactly as I've explained, tweak it, make it your own and if you have time share the changes you've made with us.  We would love to hear your ideas! 

Now if you're still reading this, I'm done rambling.  I am incredibly humbled and honored to share my ideas with others and want to leave you with a huge THANK YOU for the infinite and invaluable time, endless dedication, and unrelenting passion you spend preparing and working with young children!  I wish you well in your data collection journey! 


Miss Steph


  1. I really wish some places would adopt the different learning ideas from you. I feel that early childhood education is really key in the development of a child. Those are the years that they make connections and the earlier they can connect those synapses, the better off they will be in school. I really want to have smart children so I fully support schools that do early education. I hope to enroll my kids when the time comes.

    Zach | http://www.dnjeducational.com/schools

  2. Indeed,your post is useful for people.I go through a lot of post regarding the topic. Yet this informative article is really a very good summary along with introduction on the topic.
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