Documentation is an important process of learning the skills of listening, observing understanding and interpreting. To perfect these skills, time and interest are two important factors that should be considered. The process of assessment also plays an important role in monitoring the progress of students. This paper will discuss the useful insights shared by Brenda in an interview conducted by Lella Gandini and Judith Allen Kaminsky.
In the first question, the interviewer seeks to establish Brendas opinion on the traditional approach to documentation. In her response, Brenda seems to criticize the region approach that dwells on interpretation at the end and not in the entire learning process. It implies that the respondent does not approve of the traditional Reggio approach. She recommends a continuous evaluation process claiming that it has more benefits to a learner. In my opinion, continuous assessment is one useful technique for establishing whether a specific lesson has been gained by both the student and the teacher. In documentation, a student has to learn the art of listening, observing understanding and interpreting. The traditional approach was not keen on these pedagogies, which is the main reason Brenda questions it.
In the second question, Brenda shows every intention to acknowledge the efforts of other teachers especially those who have studied Reggio. She has had the experience to study the dynamism of the transition from the Reggio approach and identified a change in the mindset. The respondent presents a useful idea of teaching and learning as a process that should consider the approach of collaborative inquiry. In her response, Brenda has brought out technology as one of the factors to consider during documentation. In my opinion, technology has evolved so fast, and this has changed the way of learning. It is possible that this has affected the process of documentation and assessment, a situation that both learners and teachers should accommodate.
Brenda also presents her opinion regarding the attitude of children in the learning environment as well as a learning process. According to Brenda, children and children are required to exhibit a positive attitude to the learning process as well as the learning environment. This includes issues about respect and mutual trust. In any learning environment, the attitude of both the teacher and the student determines the success of a student. Basing on her argument, Brenda insists that a collaborative mode should exist in the learning mode. This collaborative model helps students and teachers understand each other better. It is a unique idea for the respondent to recommend.
Brenda has a unique opinion regarding the pedagogies of listening and presents the uniqueness of most teachers. She argues that most teachers pay more attention to theories, clever analogies, misapplication and ambiguities in a communication situation. I agree with her opinion that listening and understanding is the backbone of a communication process. Whenever a person sends a message, the receiver must understand the message and the vice versa is also correct. It can be argued that communication is primarily an art of understanding and being understood. It is also important to note that the entire goal of documentation is to communicate.
There was a question regarding vague and superficial documentation, which Brenda attributes to a lack of focus. This essay has already stated that that documentation is a skill that requires keen listening, observing understanding and interpreting. These learning skills require concentration by a student, and lack of it would lead to wrong documentation.
In this paper, I have full support for the information shared by Brenda regarding documentation. It is true that documentation is an art that of listening, observing understanding and interpreting. It has been established that these skills require time and interest to perfect. Brenda has also explained why the traditional approach is insufficient by stating that lack of an ongoing assessment prevents accurate monitoring of students progress. These lessons can be effectively used to develop realistic pedagogies required for documentation.
Gandini, L., & Kaminsky, J. A. (2004). Reflections on the relationship between documentation and assessment in the American context. Innovations in Early Education. 11, 517.
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