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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Recording playroom activities of young handicapped children Slater, Mabel Marie

Abstract

This study was concerned with the recording of observations of preschool activities of young handicapped children. Statement of problem: Is it possible to develop a useful, concise and comprehensive recording instrument that can be used in making observations of the growth and development of young children in preschool settings at special education centres? A record form was developed with a five point rating scale for a checklist of twenty-one items with some anecdotal information. This recording instrument was used by teachers in four preschool special education settings to assess the growth and development of the young child over a period of time. The material was evaluated in terms of: a) Adequacy for description of the child and his development. b) Adequacy for evaluation of and planning for the programme. c) Opinions of preschool teachers and other professional people. d) Quantitative information provided by the records were studied by means of profiles. The results showed that the time limitations imposed on most teachers of young handicapped children would make it impossible for them to complete the extensive records developed in earlier studies. A recording instrument with as few as twenty-one items could be used to provide an adequate description of a young handicapped child. Two consecutive periodic assessments showed development. Programme planning and evaluation was facilitated by using the record form to note areas of strength and weakness. Averages of group ratings showed characteristics of specific handicaps. Although a recording instrument developed in one centre may not be used adequately without adaptation in another centre, the kind of record used in this study would be useful. The record used in this study was divided into specific areas of developmental growth i.e. communication, social participation, imaginative and creative expression. Items significant to the specific handicaps could then be selected. The five point rating scale could be applied to all items. By utilizing basic elements such as these a useful, concise and comprehensive system of recording that contains a great deal of flexibility could be developed. The contribution made by the preschool in the field of special education cannot be measured and evaluated until those people working in this area realize the importance of recording their observations of the growth and development of the children with whom they work.

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