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Workshops help in using data

19 September 2013

Workshops help in using data

Photo: Wishart State School deputy principal Judy Gee, Narangba Valley deputy Karla Cochrane and Albany Creek deputy Michelle Royle attend the AEDI workshop at Kedron. Photo: Contributed

Training is available in October for principals and teachers to learn more about harnessing the power of valuable early childhood development data.

The Department of Education, Training and Employment (DETE) workshops have so far helped more than 300 professionals put the 2012 Australian Early Development Index (AEDI) to good use.

The AEDI information is enabling educators to consider where children require the most assistance and initiate programs in collaboration with parents and local communities to meet their needs.

AEDI data is a relative measure collated across five domains of early childhood development: language and cognitive skills; physical health and well-being; social competence; emotional maturity; and communication skills and general knowledge. The data is collected every three years on children in Prep, with the inaugural collection in 2009.

The DETE training sessions provide an opportunity for attendees to share ideas about how to respond to local data. Places are available for sessions coming up in October in Bundaberg, Rockhampton, Gladstone and Toowoomba.

Attending a recent AEDI school workshop in Kedron, Albany Creek State School deputy principal Michelle Royle said in response to the 2009 data, the school introduced several programs aimed at improving language skills for children in Prep.

'We immersed all our Prep students in an expressive and receptive language program in Semester 1, introduced an oral language intervention program and parent language workshop and, with input from our dedicated Prep teachers, put together home literacy packs,' Ms Royle said. 'We had really positive feedback from parents.'

To help children better transition to Prep, the school invited educators from surrounding kindergartens and child care centres to a meeting where they discussed the curriculum and ways to assist children's transition.

'We've worked with all the local kindergartens and day care centres to help with transition and we've had more positive feedback,' Ms Royle said.

Narangba Valley State School deputy principal Karla Cochrane said AEDI data was confirming their children were developing well.

She said the school had also initiated programs to assist children with transitioning to school, including a playgroup run at the school by the head of curriculum.

'The children coming to Prep (the following year) spend time in each of our Prep classes over six weeks, becoming familiar with the teachers and the expectations of them at school,' she said.

'The staff found it was a big benefit. The children that are familiar with the school settle into the routines more quickly.'

For more information about the AEDI data, AEDI training and to how to register for a session visit the Office for Early Childhood Education and Care's AEDI webpage, email the team at aedi@dete.qld.gov.au or phone (07) 3235 9056.

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