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Summative Assessments In Early Childhood

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Summative Assessments In Early Childhood Image by Andreas Breitling from Pixabay

Summative Assessment brings together information on what the child knows, understands and can do. You analyse this information, you tell a story and give an overview of a child's progress so far. This is the basis of summative assessment.

What is a Summative Assessment

The documentation you collect such as photos, jottings, observations, learning stories, work samples, parent input and more are used as evidence. You sum up all the documentation you have gathered through a variety of different sources, by asking how does it all fit together and how does it link to the learning outcomes. Basically you are providing an overview of all the documentation you have collected to show a cycle of planning, reflecting and evaluating and how the child's progresses over time.

When developing a summative assessment, you have a few options:

  • you can use a template and write details under each learning outcome
  • write a story to the child and their family which explains their achievements and what they have demonstrated develop time.
  • create individual portfolios
  • write a summary of learning in a learning journal for each child that they can share with their families

When writing a summative assessment it should:

  • emphasise children’s strengths and make their learning visible
  • draw on the family’s knowledge about their child so that the documentation
  • reflects the child’s life at home as we as at the service
  • be free from bias
  • be written in clear, easy-to-understand
  • language that makes sense to families
  • reflect knowledge of the child’s social or cultural background
  • occur systematically and regularly so that, over time, educators gain a complete picture of each child’s
  • progress in relation to the Learning Outcomes

To complete a summative assessment, you need to plan to support further learning. This can be identified when there are gaps of information in relation to a particular learning outcome. This enables you to look for further examples and which learning outcomes to highlight and focus on during planning in the future.

Examples Of Summative Assessment

The following provides a summary of learning under each of the EYLF Learning Outcomes, that forms the Summative Assessment:

A summative assessment builds a picture of the child progress over time, through the evidence you have collected. The Learning Outcomes provides key reference points in which a child's progress can be identified and documented and shows an overall picture of a child's learning journey. 

For more template ideas for Summative Assessment: EYLF Templates
You can also use our digital documentation app - Appsessment to create your own Summative Assessment. You can generate a report which will show the analysis of learning you have added for all the documentation you have created and you can use this to form your Summative Assessment. 

References:
Summative Assessment, NQS Professional Learning Program E-Newsletter, 2012
ACEQA Guide To The National Quality Standards, 2011

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