Assessment is the process of observing and documenting children’s development and learning over time. We know each child is an individual, with specific interests, skills, strengths, and their own developmental timetable. To measure and report children’s progress, we assess them to find out what they know and can do at any given point.

Educators evaluate each child’s strengths and needs to help them be successful. We do not test children. We observe what children do and say as they participate in activities in the classroom, and document those observations.

Assessment is closely linked to our learning objectives and curriculum. When assessing children, observe and nurture the skills and knowledge we want them to acquire in our program. Adjust the curriculum and instruction to meet each child’s learning needs.

progress reports

Throughout the year, parents receive regular feedback about their children’s learning and developmental progress. We are required by EEC to evaluate each toddler and preschool child every 6 months. For infants and diverse learners, we evaluate every 3 months. As part of the evaluation process, parents are invited to schedule a parent-teacher conference if they wish.

The daily sheets, conversations, and progress reports we use to communicate with families are records of their child’s growth and development. Often a child has issues that need to be addressed. More often, we are reporting progress.

Progress reports should not be used to vent or complain about a child’s annoying habits, but as a chance to outline the ways you support the child to learn appropriate interactions.

Communicate in a supportive manner to families. The following guidelines can help you decide the right words to use.

Sometimes you have already addressed an issue with a parent. Instead of rehashing, say, “Let’s meet again to discuss the progress Jose is making with his biting.”

  • demonstrates strong verbal skills
  • gets along well with others
  • likes to learn
  • enjoys new experiences
  • follows the rules
  • expresses his/her feelings
  • likes to take the lead
  • finds new ways to solve problems
  • contributes to discussions
  • helps
  • is outgoing
  • is creative
  • is blossoming
  • is enjoying…
  • will ask for help
  • has strong motor skills
  • is developing…skills
  • has adjusted well to
  • likes to be busy with….
  • perfect
  • cute
  • well-behaved
  • obedient
  • adorable
  • mild-mannered
  • smart
  • intelligent
  • good
  • delightful
  • active
  • can be sad when…
  • sometimes resists help with…
  • can find it difficult to…
  • has been working on/is still working on…
  • is still adjusting to…
  • needs encouragement to…
  • we encourage him/her to…
  • we remind her/him to…
  • sometimes struggles to…
  • moody
  • destructive
  • bad
  • aggressive
  • lazy
  • rude
  • disruptive
  • manipulative
  • pushy
  • never…
  • does not…well
  • can’t
  • won’t
  • bothers
  • antagonizes
  • headstrong
  • whiny
  • stubborn
  • possessive
  • fresh
  • nosy


Upon enrollment at First Circle, the assigned primary caregiver should start a journal for each infant and toddler, and a portfolio for each preschooler.

The primary caregiver contributes to each child’s journal or portfolio on a regular basis (at least monthly). Include information such as photos, anecdotes, and samples of children’s work. Please encourage infant and toddler families to bring the journal home and share information with us about their child’s home life. The information they provide can be used to have an ongoing conversation about the child’s learning experience. Although portfolios for preschool children do not go back and forth between home and school, you should plan and implement opportunities for parents to view and comment.

Each journal follows the child through the program from classroom to classroom until they reach preschool when it goes home for good. Portfolios are created in each Preschool classroom and go home at year end or when the child leaves the program. Children should have opportunities to contribute to their portfolio.


Parent-teacher conferences are scheduled as needed for infants and toddlers. Each preschool classroom chooses a specific date to offer short, 10-minute conferences that parents can sign up for. If requested or deemed necessary, the director may be included.

Parent/teacher meeting request forms are always available on our website. If a family indicates interest in meeting, please meet with the director beforehand to discuss the content of the meeting and determine whether Administration should be present. The director should schedule the conference so that it is convenient to everyone’s schedule.