Active Supervision for Preschoolers
Randi Shapiro: Welcome, everybody. This is the "Creating Safe and Engaging Environments" webinar, the third webinar of this week-long series on active supervision. So, I'd like to extend a warm welcome to all of you. We were pleased to see how many people were interested in this topic. It is my great pleasure to introduce Jamie Sheehan, who is the federal project officer of the National Center on Quality Teaching and Learning, and she is also an OHS program specialist. Take it away, Jamie.
Jamie Sheehan: Thank you, Randi. I'm happy to be participating with this week-long series on active supervision. OHS has a high interest in active supervision. Creating safe places for children is our top priority in Head Start and Early Head Start programs. Unfortunately, there are still some cases where we find children are being left unattended.
As you know, the program standards state that no child should be left alone or unsupervised while in their care. However, after reviewing some data that programs report, we find that children are being left unattended on buses and during transitions throughout the day. Some of these transitions include arrivals and pick-ups, outside on the playground areas or in indoor play areas, as well as transitioning from the bathrooms, to and from, and any times when classrooms might combine. So, this means there is an extra emphasis for more supervision during these times. As a former 3- and 4-year-old teacher, a child care center director, and as a Head Start education manager, safety was a top priority.
Because, let's be honest, if children aren't safe, we can't enjoy teaching them and watching them learn. I've had a lot of experience with supervision systems, in putting them in place, finding a variety of strategies to keep supervising fresh and fun for the adults. We used to use bright and fun themed clipboards for our class rosters to keep track of children, signing them in and out and counting children wherever we went. We carried our clipboards, again, wherever we went, counting children coming and going and everywhere in between.
All the staff I've worked with for over the last 20 years would never intentionally leave a child unattended, but again, it still happens. I used to play this game with my staff during in-services. I would ask my staff, "Would you ever leave a 3-year-old alone?" They'd look at me like I was crazy, "Of course not." "How about a 4-year-old?" "No, we'd never leave a 4-year-old." "Well, what about a 5-year-old? They're older." They'd look at me again like my questions were ridiculous, thinking to themselves, "Who would ever leave a child alone?" But like I said, it can still happen.
One day, many years ago, I was covering a classroom during naptime with a substitute. All the children were sleeping except for one, who needed to use the bathroom. How often does that happen? All the time. I took the child to the bathroom, and when we returned to the classroom, the substitute wasn't there. All the children were still asleep. A minute later, she returned to the classroom. I asked her where she was, and she said she needed to use the restroom herself, and thought that it was okay to leave, because all the children were sleeping so soundly; it would only take a minute, and she didn't know she shouldn't be using the bathroom at that time.
That situation has stayed with me for many years. I can still remember my heart dropping, my stomach churning, when I returned to the classroom and there was no adult present. I thought, "Wow, we really might have just escaped something much more serious."
I reflected back, after my heart returned to a normal beating, and I thought, how are we training our staff? What's the staff; what's the training that they're receiving? What's the process for hiring and training our substitutes? And what is our process for communicating with each other? We needed to be sure our policies and our expectations were clear and that we were talking to each other. We developed new trainings for staff when substitutes were in the classroom and we ensured -- and how we would ensure proper communication.
It became a part of us, how everyone that came into contact with children, during the day became a part of their team. We were a team made up of bus drivers, bus aides, parents, teachers, family service workers, cooks, volunteers, managers, whoever. And how we were a team, whether it was for the next one hour, four hours, six hours, or eight hours, we needed to make sure that we had happy, healthy, and safe children.
As you may know, in the PIR data, we have 90 percent of our enrolled children in center-based programs. And of those, we also have 82 percent of children who are 3- to 5-year-olds. And another interesting fact is that in 2014, more than 300,000 children were transported to and from Head Start programs and on field trips. So, as you can see, we have many children relying on a team to keep them safe.
I'm very excited for NCQTL's webinar to discuss active supervision for preschoolers and how their resources can support all staff. So, I'm going to turn it back over to Randi, who's going to take us through the webinar.
Randi: Thanks, Jamie. And it was great to hear you emphasize again about the team approach, because we always talk about keeping children safe is everybody's responsibility. So, we are going to focus on what's going on in the classroom for the next 40 minutes, but I really appreciate that reference.
So, I'm Randi Shapiro, and I'm the executive director of the National Center on Quality Teaching and Learning. And with me today is Kristin Ainslie, who is one of the Teacher Time co-hosts as well as one of our curriculum writers. And between us, for the next 45 minutes or so, we're going to walk you through some information about active supervision in the classroom.
Before we get started, I thought we could just take a moment to review the goals just to provide you with a quick overview of what we'll be discussing, especially since those of you who stay on for the full webinar will have the opportunity at the end to complete the feedback form and also to request a certificate of attendance.
So, the goals that we have thought about for this session were, one, to review active supervision strategies at the preschool level; to share both OHS and NCQTL resources, along with the other national centers, to support active supervision; and then to answer questions, and if we have time, to hear successes that you've had with active supervision. What is active supervision? The definition that we're all using is active supervision is intentionally observing children at all times.
Now, we know that teachers and caregivers use these strategies all the time throughout the day every day. It's actually very difficult not to use some of those strategies in the classroom. And we think that they really are the key components of intentional teaching and they are fundamental to keeping children in our care safe and engaged.
For those of you who may have participated in the previous webinars this week, you may -- you have heard reference to the six strategies that are associated with active supervision. And they're listed on the screen, and it's set up the environment, position staff, scan and count, listen, anticipate children's behavior, engage and redirect.
And I'm sure you would all agree that these are strategies that you use regularly in your classrooms and while you're caring for children. Knowing that you're already using these strategies, we thought it would be great to capture some of your best tips and ideas and success stories for keeping active supervision fresh and really intentional within your rooms and classrooms.
So, we thought perhaps you could enter them in the chat box on the right. Only you and the presenters here will be able to see them, but we will compile them for future reference. So, feel free as we're going through the slides to jot down activities and successes you have had. And at the end, we're going to leave time for questions, so post your questions in the chat box, and if your question isn't answered today, because I'm looking, and there's 724 of your colleagues on the call with you; if we don't have time to answer all of them, we will compile the questions and respond to them.
So, very briefly, resources for you, that's what you need to know. This active supervision toolkit was developed by the Office of Head Start, the national centers. And we just posted a link to that also in the chat box, so you'll get to have access to that; it's on the ECLKC. What we think is terrific about the toolkit is that it contains many resources you may already be familiar with, but the beauty of it is that it's one- stop shopping for you to get it all with one click. We've had -- this was developed by all of the national centers, and we really do believe it's got the most relevant resources for you to find quickly.
So, hopefully you're all very familiar with the ECLKC. One tip I like to think about whenever I'm on it is to use the search function at the top, but also, specifically about active supervision, if you think of what the goal is, "keep children safe with active supervision;" if you just type that into the Google search function, you'll always come upon this page. So "keep children safe," okay?
Two other just quick resources that you'll want to know about is that we have developed both a beautiful poster that you can download and hang up in your classroom, so everyone can remember the six strategies of active supervision -- it's very colorful -- as well as an "Active Supervision At-A-Glance" handout. We think these strategies, having them visible, will really help keep it fresh and apparent as you go forward every day in your classroom.
So, now I'd like to introduce our very own Teacher Time co-host, Kristin Ainslie, who's going to walk us through a few NCQTL resources. Again, some you may already be familiar with, which is terrific, but it'll be through the lens of active supervision, and it will specifically focus on classroom zoning and transitions.
Kristin Ainslie: That's right. Thank you, Randi. So, this is Kristin Ainslie talking with you now. And I am, just as Randi said, going to show you and highlight some practices that are in our NCQTL 15-minute in- service suites. And again, we're going to look at these just a slightly different way today, thinking about active supervision. And I'm going to focus on one of them, but what I was thinking of, I was just thinking as I was driving in today, thinking about how to keep active supervision really fresh and intentional, I was thinking about how there's those statistics how people get into, sometimes, car accidents very close to their neighborhood, right?
So, we're driving from our house; we are not even thinking about our turn signal, maybe; it's all just automatic. Of course, we know that we need to be safe drivers; of course, we need to check our blind spots; but, sometimes I can get a couple blocks from my house and I think, "Oh, my gosh, I don't quite even remember getting a couple blocks from my house." So, this is kind of what we are thinking about with active supervision. Yes, of course, we all want children to be safe; we all can list all of our safety practices; but, really keeping it fresh and thoughtful and intentional is what we want to talk about today. Okay, so it all starts with setting up the environment.
So, thinking about the environment that the early childhood classroom shows off in terms of safety. And many early childhood classrooms and programs, and maybe, we have some as teachers that are uniquely shaped, right? So, some might be L-shaped, or some might be very, very large, some might be very, very small. And so, it's up to the teachers and the directors and managers to think about all of the unique ways to use the space.
So, thinking about, can you see over the shelves, can you easily pop your head up from playing in the block area and scan and count all the children? So, thinking about the arrangement of the environment is really important. And that this really should be sort of an ongoing, changing process of moving things around. So, one of the biggest strategies and practices that I'm going to highlight, right now, are staff scheduling or zoning.
So, zoning comes from, a long time ago, teachers and researchers thinking about zoning, in terms of arranging staff in the classroom environment in order to be efficient, to keep children engaged, and to reduce wait time. So, if we think about creating a zoning schedule, here at NCQTL, we are just calling it zoning. Teachers are -- in zoning, teachers are choosing specific areas of the classroom to be in. And in their area, they're responsible for set tasks, during a certain time frame. We really recommend zoning and creating a classroom schedule for every activity and transition, right? So, where teachers are going to be during every moment of the day.
So, if we look at the schedule that's on the screen right now, we see that the activities are down the left- hand side: Arrival, breakfast, transition to the outside, outside, transition to classroom. And then there's staff person A, staff person B, if you're lucky enough to have two, and then sometimes there might be a volunteer or a parent that pops in every once in a while. So, it's nice to have a third column for where to insert another adult in the classroom.
So, thinking about, let's just for instance take transition to outside. So, possibly teacher A is the one who signals the transition. Maybe, they blow bubbles; maybe, they sing songs, while children are gathering towards the door. Staff person B cleans up breakfast tables and helps children get their coats on. So, it's all about arranging staff to really maximize your supervision. So, positioning staff to -- in the classroom is absolutely part of zoning and scheduling. So, thinking about where staff are positioned throughout the room is incredibly important for making sure that active supervision takes place at all times.
So, we want teachers to position themselves so that they can see all the children in their care from any position in the room. So another important part of positioning is when teachers. Another part of positioning is thinking about when teachers are playing in areas, that they don't have their backs to the middle of the classroom but that their backs are facing the walls and that their eyes are out into the middle of the classroom. And of course we think that's a very -- you know, maybe a very oversimplified way to think about it, but really it's important to position your body, so that you can see all of the children in the classroom. All right, we also want to make sure that we are increasing our proximity to children, during our scheduling. So, teachers who are remaining more static in their positioning, maybe they're staying in one spot during activities, can easily miss out on problems that arise in busy classrooms.
Okay, so another very important aspect to staff scheduling and zoning and organizing of staff is to talk. So, I've been in many classrooms where the teachers really rarely ever talk to each other. They rarely check in with each other or have eye contact, because -- of course, not on purpose, but it's just very, very busy in the classroom.
And so, we really encourage teachers to talk to each other, back-and-forth communication, talking about, commenting on children, talking all the time, so that safety information is easily spread through the room. It may seem strange at first, sometimes, for teachers to talk to each other; but, it's incredibly helpful for active supervision to know, you know, that there are either changes in staff or children's routines, changes in roles, changes during transitions. It's just incredibly important to communicate back and forth with teachers.
Okay, so zoning and active supervision. So, of course, the strategies, the active supervision strategies: Listening, anticipating children's behavior, scanning and counting, engaging and redirecting. Lots and lots of ways for a staff zoning schedule to help, to keep children safe, and to make it easy to practice active supervision. So, the strategy of listening, really I was thinking about a lot today, and I was thinking about on Monday when Amanda Bryans was talking about the importance of just knowing the children and knowing the children's names, their personalities, their tendencies. When we as staff know where we need to be, we can easily stop and think and listen, "You know, this just doesn't sound right," right? I'm sure as teachers we've had those moments, that it just doesn't sound right, right here, and I know that I can recognize this child's laughter or conflicts that are happening. And so, we've got an ear always to listen for the absence of sounds as well as laughter or conflict.
Okay, anticipating behaviors -- anticipating what could happen when we all go to the bathroom, or to centers or to outdoor time, or to another space in the center, or to a bus or other transportation to and from the center. Again, another reason to talk to each other, but really wanting to anticipate children's behavior. Scanning and counting. Scanning and counting within your zone, within where you are needing to be when thinking about your staff schedule. Counting children at circle; counting children in the bathroom; having redundant systems in place so that both teachers are counting, and again, talking back and forth, if numbers don't seem to add up to what they should be.
So, engaging and redirecting. And one of the main purposes of zoning was created to help all teachers -- all children be engaged and to minimize unnecessary wait times. So, because all staff know their roles in the classroom with zoning and tasks are getting handled, children are engaged and -- children are engaged and the unsupervised wait time is really minimized.
And so, the whole purpose of zoning: It helps keep the children safe as well. All right, so there are definitely times when we need to be extra vigilant. And so, thinking about transitions, we know that what Jamie has talked about and we've talked about, and we've heard this week during transitions especially, inside, outside, arrival, departure.
When routines change -- maybe, there's a picture day or a field trip or a fire drill. So, of course we're vigilant at all times, but during these transitions or routine changes, we are definitely heightened in terms of our active supervision. Okay, so thinking about some strategies that support transitions. One thing that teachers can think about is to try to minimize, maybe the number of transitions, so that there aren't as many transitions happening in the classroom. Also, making sure that there's a plan for what adults will do, before, during, and after transition time.
So, sometimes we don't think about transitions as almost a three-part sequence. There's the before transition, there's during the transition, and there's after the transition, and making sure that there are written plans for all three of those stages of a transition. All right, so some tips to remember of what we talked about in terms of zoning, in terms of staff positioning, what this looks like in a preschool classroom, positioning your body, so that you can see the whole zone or your whole area.
Of course, scanning your zone or area in the classroom or outside area often, scanning and counting. Talking to other teachers or other teachers in the classroom, as children move between areas. Things like, "Okay, Teacher Randi, here comes Sarah. She is super excited to go play at the science area. Here she comes." All of that communication is really, really helpful for active supervision. And then being flexible is incredibly important. So, when we talk about zoning, we don't talk about just staying in one place no matter what.
We want teachers, again, to talk to each other, to be flexible in their zone or area, and to be able to move as needed. Okay, so all of the tools and tips and information that I have talked about today in this session are all available on the active supervision toolkit. They're also available through NCQTL. These are all links that we have put on the toolkit, so that you can find all of these handouts and things very easily.
And... again, here's another tool. This is redirecting behavior. This is something that can easily befilled out by preschool teachers. And then using tools to plan transitions. So, here's another tool that we have linked you up to for thinking about the transitions. And oftentimes when programs are able to really just attend to their transitions and think about the plans for transitions, the safety and supervision is also beefed up.
So, we are now going to kind of transition. We want to make sure that there's enough time for question and answer. We know that many questions have come in during the webinar today, and so we are going to just take just a second and get some questions ready for you to listen to.
Randi: So, we're ready to get started with some questions. The first question that came in is: "What do you recommend as a first step for programs who want to reenergize their practice with an eye towards active supervision?" And that really is a great question, and it already states that active supervision happens, but how do you look at it with a fresh eye?
Kristin: That's a really, really good question. I love to think about, what is the first step? And really I think it's about talking with your program -- so, talking with what are our needs and what are our strengths? What are the areas right now that we are really doing well in, we feel like we all know what needs to happen, we feel like the children are moving very efficiently through activities or transitions? But thinking about, maybe, other times of the day where we need to attend a little bit more and really strengthen up our plans in terms of supervision. So, really kind of taking a strengths and needs-based look at programs and really having those conversations.
Randi: Great. Thank you, Kristin. I think that does make sense. Another question that came in was, "We have been told it is okay to use the bathroom when the children are asleep. Is it okay? I'm confused." We thought we'd let Jamie answer this one.
Jamie: Yes, thanks. So, I'm sorry if I have confused anyone. It is okay to use the bathroom while the children are asleep if there is another adult in the classroom. If you are the only adult in the classroom and you leave the classroom -- maybe, you have a restroom that's in your classroom, that's fine, but if you leave the classroom, you've left the children unattended. If you're the only adult in the room and you leave the room, the children are then left unattended, and that's out of compliance.
Randi: Okay, well, that is clear. That's very helpful. Another question that we would like to talk about is: "Would a necklace or bracelet holding many clothespins with children's names be permissible as a tool to keep up with children?" "My thought," from the participant was, "would be to attach pictures or to attach pins each day as children arrive." So, again, it's a mini-tracking system.
And, before we respond to that I also just want to bring us back to -- if any of you were on the call on Monday when Amanda Bryans was talking, and she really expressed how important it is to really know the names of all the children and understand their behaviors and anticipate. And so, knowing that that can't always happen, if there's a sub or somebody else in the classroom, this necklace or bracelet with clothespins is a unique idea. Kristin, any thoughts?
Kristin: Absolutely. I think that's a great idea. I think if it's working for you, there's no reason why you wouldn't want to use it. And I think that there's many ways that this could be, you know, used or simplified or modified for your program. So, maybe it's just a list that's in someone's back pocket; maybe, it's on a 3 x 5 card; maybe, it's -- again; maybe it's paper clips that have each child's name on them and they're clipped onto part of the clipboard or something like that. But I like that idea that children's names are all visible at a glance. I think that's a great -- a great idea.
Randi: Okay, the questions are pouring in. This is terrific.
Kristin: This is great.
Randi: Yeah. So, here's another one: "What is the best way to implement active supervision, when you have one or more children with behavior issues?"
Kristin: Hmm, that is a very good question, and I think that, you know, thinking about -- that's where written plans, in terms of zoning and staff scheduling can really, really be your friend in this area, because thinking about the times when a specific child may need to have an adult within close proximity. Maybe, this isn't the whole time; maybe, thinking about what are the times of the day when this child is really, really doing well and really engaged, and other times of the day when this child tends to have more challenging behavior or tends to really need some adult support nearby.
So, those are the times that we're going to actually write down that teacher A is going to be setting up for breakfast and helping children get engaged and maybe helping with arrival, and maybe teacher B is going to be really having a close eye on a specific child who has some challenges.
And I think, again, working this into your written plan for knowing that increased proximity is needed at certain times of the day. I think that's great, absolutely. That's a very common, common issue.
Randi: All right, well, I think we have a question that maybe Jamie can help us with. This question came in from a participant that said, "As a home provider, what is the ratio of children to staff when there is only one caregiver?"
Jamie: Okay, so that's sort of a tricky question, because in family child care, your ratios depend on how old the children are. So, if you had all infants, you would have less numbers than if you had all 3- or 4- year-olds. So, I'm not exactly sure the ages of the children for this family child care provider, but we're happy to have you on the call, and I think some of the same strategies that Kristin had shared about sort of zoning and where you could best position yourself, if you have three or four children in your family child care home. Kristin, is there anything you can think of?
Kristin: Yeah, so I think that -- yeah, family care provider.
Randi: Yes. So, when there's -- if you -- [laughs] Okay, so that's -- Jamie, I'm sorry, we were doing a little twist here, moving around.
Kristin: These questions, we're just reading all the questions. I'm so sorry.
Randi: We're getting so excited about them.
Kristin: Yes, exactly. So, tell me, Jamie, where you left off with that question.
Jamie: Oh, no, I was just saying, I was sharing some of the strategies that you shared for center-based as far as positioning yourself are certainly things that a family child care provider could also do.
Kristin: Absolutely. So family child care is a great spot, again, that all of the strategies for zoning and scheduling really come into play in family child care. There's truly not a difference in terms of making sure that plans are in place. When there's one staff member, when there's two people, maybe at certain times of the day, all of these plans could be written, written down and created for, "Okay, what am I going to be doing at this time? What am I going to be doing? And, what is my teacher assistant going to be doing during breakfast time, or when we're transitioning maybe some of the children outside to play and some are still finishing up with an activity?" So, family child care absolutely can use zoning strategies just as well.
Randi: All right. Thank you. Let's see, here's another one, and this is actually a very good one. I mean, they're all good questions, but this is one people struggle with regularly: "What is the balance between teachers talking to each other and engaging with children? How do you find that balance?" And I think I'd love to hear your response to that as well as Jamie's.
Kristin: Yeah, I can just start off on this one, and, Jamie, you can add in. So, the teachers talking to each other, I have worked a lot with teachers to sort of begin this process, because it is -- it does sometimes feel strange at first for teachers to be talking to each other. Of course, the engaging of children in teaching and learning and safety is paramount. So, I would -- I would say that the talking back and forth between teachers is really, should really be enhancing child engagement and learning. So, it's not about talking about, you know, as much as I want to talk to you about what I did over the weekend or something that happened to me this morning; that's not what we're really talking about.
We're talking about sharing information, communicating between teachers about children, about what's happening. You know, "I'm going to take these three children to the bathroom, and I will be back soon." And then the other teacher responds with, "That sounds great. We're going to be remaining right here. I've got so and so on the sensory table, and we'll see you in a minute." Or for whatever reason, or, "Here comes Randi to the art table. She is very excited to draw a picture over there. I can't wait for you to see what she's got going on." So, it's really about sharing information between teachers. But of course engagement is our first priority.
Jamie: Yep, and I think I would agree with everything you've just said. I think one of my favorite phrases was -- you know, talking to my co-teacher in the classroom was saying, "Ms. Ivy, Marcus is finished over here. He's now going to go to housekeeping." You know, so just constantly letting folks know, or he's -- now signaling, "He's leaving my zone, and now he's coming to yours."
So, when we think about also going back to the pieces about challenging behaviors, and sort of everybody's aware where a particular child who might struggle with playing in housekeeping, they'll know that that child is there.
Kristin: That's right, and what a great way to sort of encourage children talking to the other teacher in your proximity or across the room as a child who's coming over who may be struggling sometimes. But, you know, "Jamie, here comes -- here comes Johnny. He is super excited to be over in dramatic play today." That kind of thing, and just setting this child off on the right foot by talking to the other teacher in your proximity. Great. Any more questions, Randi?
Randi: Well, actually, this one is very similar; it's coming from a variety of venues, both in terms of family child care homes, as well as, even in group settings: "What is an effective way to watch over a large group, 10 children or more, when you have no one with you?" And that is a very --
Jamie: I'm going to take the first part of that. So, some of that sentence is a little -- makes my heart feel a little bit funny, because we always want to make sure that we're in ratio and we're in compliance with the ratio. So, if you have 10 children and you are alone, you are most likely out of -- if you have more than 10 children, you are most likely out of ratio. And so, that part is concerning. However, if you have 10 children and you are alone, that can also be challenging, but you may not be out of ratio, depending on how old your children are. And so, I think that's where the ideas that Kristin gave and the strategies and the tools around zoning and staff schedule and at least positioning yourself, and then if you think about how you might use some strategies if you are alone; maybe, you decide you need to have a small group with five children, and you might have five children that are in centers that are nearby to you and that you're able to quickly stand up, and different strategies if you are alone.
Kristin: Absolutely, and maybe it's about planning for those times, where it's not a "sit down, read a book with a couple of children" kind of time. Maybe this is a time where, again, just as Jamie said, you're maybe floating from area to area; you've really got your eye on all the children, and then, when you have another staff person back into the classroom or you have a lower ratio of children, that that's the time you plan for maybe more small, more intimate, maybe block play or book reading.
Randi: All right. Let's see, another one that just came up was: "How do you incorporate active supervision at naptime when one or more children will not take a nap? What is appropriate for the child to do that won't interfere with the other sleeping children?"
Kristin: Yeah, I can just -- I worked with a classroom that had this exact issue going on, and what they had ended up doing, there were a couple children who just were not sleeping. What they ended up doing is just having a small box of very quiet materials and books near the child. The child's expectations were to remain on their little mat and to remain quiet, but that they could look through books, that they could put a quiet puzzle together, that they had some quiet activities that within the parameters of what that classroom had set up that they were able to do. So, that they were still within the sort of naptime area but that they were just not sleeping. So, if you have anything more to add to that Jamie, too?
Jamie: No, I think you covered it all.
Kristin: All right.
Randi: All right, well, we have one more question taking us back to the bathroom.
Kristin: Oh, yes, of course.
Randi: And this is an interesting one as well: "Do children need to be seen in the bathroom or can they just be heard? Some parents don't like bathrooms without doors because of privacy issues." So, that's an interesting approach to think about.
Kristin: Yeah, absolutely. And I can start off here -- I may not know all of this. I think in our programs when we -- you know, many, many times in a preschooler's life is -- it's a bathroom time. So, I think having doors on bathroom stalls, we certainly didn't have a problem with it, and there was no issue in terms of making sure -- this is, again, a communication issue between staff members where you know exactly how many children are in the bathroom, exactly how many maybe you've taken into the bathroom.
Maybe, there's four children that you were with and you know exactly who's in the bathroom, who's washing their hands, you're standing by the door. Maybe, you begin singing songs by the door, as you wait for the third and fourth child to finish up in the bathroom. And so, I'm not aware of a rule about doors or not doors, but I think it's absolutely fine to give children privacy while they're going to the bathroom.
Jamie: Right. So, that's typically a local grantee's decision about how the structuring of restrooms happen. We don't have anything written in our performance standards around doors or no doors, but just access to.
Kristin: Okay. Yeah, good.
Randi: All right, let's see. We have time for one or two more questions. Let's see, and the most recent one that came in -- well, people are really interested in how they can access this PowerPoint and this webinar; so, let me just take a moment to say that it will be archived and it will be posted on the ECLKC on that page we referenced about keeping children safe with active supervision. So, you can find it there; it'll be up as soon as we're able to get it up. And we will also be compiling both the questions, as well as, the comments and suggestions that people are sending in.
Let's see, there was also a question about certificates. If you're viewing this as a group right now, each individual needs to fill out the survey, so that they are then able to get a copy of the certificate. So, the webinar will be open with the link for a while, and so you'll be able to view it for as long as you need to. Let's see. Anything else? Any more questions? I'll take one more quick peek here at some of the ones.
Kristin: These are really great questions, I just have to say, and it just is so clear that so many people are thinking about these things on a daily basis, which is great. I mean, we can't shore up our plans and kind of get them going, if we're not really thinking about these and asking these questions, you know? Is it okay to have doors on the bathroom stalls; is it okay to have children back and forth? And I think it's just great, I think, to just begin this whole discussion about safety, something that we think is so automatic, but just making sure that we have things in place. It's great.
Randi: Okay, I think we have, let's see, for our -- I think this will be our final question. "Do you feel that safety is jeopardized when the full-time teacher leaves the room for whatever -- for a period of time?" So, to summarize that, do you feel that it's safe to have not the full-time teacher in the room but having the part-time teacher in the room, is the question.
Kristin: Okay, so maybe thinking about like a lead teacher and an assistant, maybe the lead teacher steps out for some reason and an assistant is in the classroom. Yeah, I think, -- Jamie, is there anything that you want to start off with that question?
Jamie: I think we all know that things happen, and sometimes we're a little bit out of our ratio, as long as it's not for extended periods of time. Sometimes, a parent comes and would like to talk to you, and you might step outside of the door for a second. Or you may actually have to use the bathroom yourself, and so one person is in the classroom for a short amount of time. And I think that if you feel confident in both teachers' skills, whether they're a lead teacher or an assistant teacher or a full-time teacher or a part-time teacher, hopefully the systems that are in place, you have qualified staff that know the children well enough to know and who are able to manage the classroom. And I think that these situations do occur, and that if there are concerns, I think you need to talk about them. That's where the communication can also come in.
Kristin: Absolutely. I think that's great. There absolutely are things that happen all the time, where a head teacher might need to just take away their attention for a moment, and so, yeah, again, I think if there are concerns about that, that that's a conversation to begin with. So, that's great.
Randi: A good way to wrap up here, talking about communication, which is really essential in all that we do in keeping children safe. So, thank you for participating. Please do complete the evaluation that you'll see at the end of the webinar, and then you'll be able to choose to receive a certificate of attendance.
Our final slide, which has questions or comments for NCQTL, just to let you know that the National Center on Quality Teaching and Learning -- we are available to answer your questions by email or phone. You can contact us to ask questions, hear comments, and reflect on your successes as well as your challenges with active supervision. If you are going to be emailing the National Center on Quality Teaching and Learning, it might be helpful to put "active supervision" in the subject line. All right, everybody, thank you for spending the last 45 minutes with us. We found this very engaging. We're happy you were with us and look forward to continued conversations on active supervision.
Jamie: Thank you, everyone. Kristin: Bye, everyone.
Explore the National Center on Quality Teaching and Learning (NCQTL) in-service suites through the lens of active supervision! Join Jamie Sheehan from the Office of Head Start and Kristin Ainslee, host of NCQTL's Teacher Time, for a 45-minute webinar. It also includes a question and answer session.