Preschool observation supported by smartphone applications Conference Paper uri icon


  • In the field of early childhood education, some benchmarks to evaluate the quality of contexts has been developed. One of these benchmarks, developed in the scope of the Effective Early Learning Project, uses the Child Tracking Observation Schedule. The observer records his perception about the concentration, persistence, motivation, energy, satisfaction, complexity and creativity, reaction time and language, trying to establish how the child really feels and experiences the overall learning process. This is a complex process that requires several observations of different children, through the daily routine. The observation results are, essentially, translated in a paper based table, summarizing the human perception in a condensed form. Many details persist only in the memory of the observer, although they are typically lost and it is not possible to pass them to another observer, to discuss results as well as to train new observers. The flexibility of smartphones is well known by the general population, allowing their users to make phone calls, check e-mail, get directions, take photographs and many other operations. Our proposal, discussed in this paper, is to use smartphones to assist kindergarten teachers in quality control observa- tions. A custom made application, to allow observers to register observation details in the smartphone, is described. This application also allows them to record other type of material, such as video, photos and sound, thus making a complete record of each observation. This record will be used for assessment of the observation as well as to train new observers.

publication date

  • January 1, 2013