Publications and Research

The Kindergarten Early Learning Scale (KELS) was developed as a concise observational assessment for young children. It examines three domains including (1) Math/Science, (2) Social Emotional/Social Studies, and (3) Language and Literacy, with a total of 10 items across the domains. Scores reported for each of the 10 items are based upon observational evidence collected by the teacher over a period of roughly three months. This [report] outlines how decisions about the content of the instrument were made, based on several criteria, and the value of the instrument. The items assessed represent the development of kindergarten children, are measurable (observable), develop on a continuum (to see growth and development over time), and are critical to present and future learning.

NIEER Research Professor Shannon Riley-Ayers presented at the San Antonio Association for the Education of Young Children (SAAEYC) on the question policymakers should ask regarding formative assessment. Dr. Riley-Ayers also discussed the Early Learning Scale, an assessment tool developed by NIEER and The Center: Resources for Teaching & Learning in conjunction with Lakeshore Learning.