Provide an example of how you would scaffold a child’s learning to promote development and growth. How is that connected to DAP?
Scaffolding (also known as scaffold learning, scaffold method, scaffold teaching, and instructional scaffolding) is a very popular method in early childhood education.It refers to the type of assistance provided when a child is working to accomplish a task. While there are many ways to offer support to a child, such as giving specific instructions on what to do, showing them what to do through demonstration, or offering general encouragement when they are on the right track, studies have shown that no single strategy has proven to be superior.
In construction, a scaffold is a temporary structure used by workers to access heights and areas that are hard to get to. This is exactly what educators are doing when they scaffold for students. A student is having a hard time reaching a new height—understanding a concept, answering a question, or completing an activity—and the teacher provides just enough support to allow the student to succeed.
Scaffolding is widely considered to be an essential element of effective teaching, and all teachers—to a greater or lesser extent—almost certainly use various forms of instructional scaffolding in their teaching. In addition, scaffolding is often used to bridge learning gaps—i.e., the difference between what students have learned and what they are expected to know and be able to do at a certain point in their education. For example, if students are not at the reading level required to understand a text being taught in a course, the teacher might use instructional scaffolding to incrementally improve their reading ability until they can read the required text independently and without assistance. One of the main goals of scaffolding is to reduce the negative emotions and self-perceptions that students may experience when they get frustrated, intimidated, or discouraged when attempting a difficult task without the assistance, direction, or understanding they need to complete it.
By using Developmentally Appropriate Practice (DAP) principles teachers can be confident that the decisions they are making are in the best interest of the children they serve.DAP means teaching young children in ways that meet them where they are at developmentally, both as individuals and as a group, and then taking them to the next level by helping each child reach challenging and achievable goals that continue their developmental and academic progress.Moving children toward the next stage in their development and learning requires the teacher to be intentional in everything they do. This includes setting up the environment, infusing the day with learner outcomes, creating a schedule that includes both intentional instruction and ample time for students to learn through play, as well as seeing those teachable moments when working with a child and responding in a way that supports the learner in developing a deeper level of understanding. For children with disabilities, DAP means providing individualized instruction and scaffolding of learning in order for them to be successful in an inclusive environment.