Arc Pathway is a sensitive profiling system which tracks progress and then provides effective, targeted, individualised next step pathways for use within nursery and preschool settings for all children aged 12 – 60 months.

In the light of recent findings, children are starting school in the UK with clear gaps in communication and pre-literacy skills, despite the tracking systems presently in use.

Arc Pathway’s assessment criteria are sensitive enough to identify small yet significant milestones that underpin the child’s learning. Arc Pathway places wellbeing at the heart of each child’s assessment and learning journey, effectively measuring key areas of wellbeing that are often not considered in standard assessment processes.

‘Experience-based brain development in the early years sets neurological and biological pathways that affect an individual’s health, learning and behaviour throughout life.’

Mustard, 2007

Arc Pathway is designed to help early years providers by:

  • Tracking the progress of children aged 12-60 months across seven areas of learning using detailed 6 monthly milestones
  • Gaining a detailed picture of a child’s overall development
  • Identifying areas where a child may need support
  • Identifying foundational skills which might be missed in broad age band assessments or which are not included in routine assessment processes
  • Providing effective, targeted, individualised next steps
  • Communicating at every point with the child’s parents/guardians
  • Analysing children’s data, progress over time and comparison of cohorts.

Arc Pathway covers both prime and specific areas from 12 months, e.g. looking at very early pre-literacy and pre-numeracy skills as well as areas such as early sensory processing and joint attention. Overall Arc Pathway incorporates 34 different strands of development and learning from 12 to 60 months.

Arc Pathway creates individual visual arcs which illustrate each child’s developmental pattern in 7 areas of learning which include:

Wellbeing

formally Personal, Social and Emotional Development

Physical Development

including sensory integration

Communication
and Language

Literacy

Mathematics

Expressive
Arts and Design

Understanding
the World

Wellbeing

Wellbeing promotes and supports children’s mental health, enriches learning and development, reduces physical illness, and enhances social cohesion.

 ‘Human relationships, and the effects of relationships on relationships, are the building blocks of healthy development.’ (The National Research Council 2000)

From birth, loving relationships provide children with a sense of security and confidence, namely wellbeing. Such wellbeing is vital for the child’s continuing healthy development. Levels of wellbeing can be raised significantly in short periods of time when adults are fully aware of the place of wellbeing in a child’s development, and are attentive to supporting any gaps in the child’s happiness and welfare.

Discerning a child’s wellbeing depends on a sound knowledge of a child’s home life, interests, temperament and understanding of their world. Arc Pathway uses 5 criteria (attachment, confidence, self-awareness, social awareness and self-regulation) to measure wellbeing in order to gauge a child’s happiness, security and confidence. Once these criteria are met a child will be able to continue to fully develop in other areas of learning.

Physical Development will effectively support a child’s ever-growing ability to move, feel, sense and understand where their body is in space.

Movement primes the brain for learning, fostering the neural pathways that form the foundations for cognitive, physical, emotional and spiritual learning. (Te whāriki online)

Physical competence, attitudes and knowledge all culminate in a child’s physical literacy. Experts agree that physical ‘literacy’ is vital to a child’s overall development. Careful observation of a child’s developing physical skills and attitude will effectively support a child’s ever-growing ability to move, feel, sense and understand where their body is in space. Unearthing sensory processing issues, physical difficulties or concerns about independence are repeatedly overlooked, due to the lack of detailed observation necessary to reveal any such gaps.

Arc Pathway uses 6 criteria (Response to internal senses, response to external sensations, gross motor, managing routines/personal belongings, toileting/personal hygiene and eating) to systematically and meticulously measure a child’s physical and sensory development. Once these criteria are met a child can thrive in their physical world.

Physical Development

Physical Development

Physical Development will effectively support a child’s ever-growing ability to move, feel, sense and understand where their body is in space.

Movement primes the brain for learning, fostering the neural pathways that form the foundations for cognitive, physical, emotional and spiritual learning. (Te whāriki online)

Physical competence, attitudes and knowledge all culminate in a child’s physical literacy. Experts agree that physical ‘literacy’ is vital to a child’s overall development. Careful observation of a child’s developing physical skills and attitude will effectively support a child’s ever-growing ability to move, feel, sense and understand where their body is in space. Unearthing sensory processing issues, physical difficulties or concerns about independence are repeatedly overlooked, due to the lack of detailed observation necessary to reveal any such gaps.

Arc Pathway uses 6 criteria (Response to internal senses, response to external sensations, gross motor, managing routines/personal belongings, toileting/personal hygiene and eating) to systematically and meticulously measure a child’s physical and sensory development. Once these criteria are met a child can thrive in their physical world.

Communication
and Language

Communication and Language is central to young children’s development because it helps children make sense of their world whilst enabling loving and meaningful relationships with others.

Language is central to young children’s development by helping making sense of their world and by enabling loving and meaningful relationships with others. Supporting a child’s ability to communicate, speak and connect is key to their future overall development and progress.

Arc Pathway uses 5 criteria (attention skills, understanding, processing and retaining, speaking and social communication). Such criteria cover all the key milestones in a child’s ability to understand and communicate ensuring that those children who are assessed will have any gaps immediately uncovered, and support put in place early enough to make a significant difference. Once these criteria are met children are able to develop full  ‘school readiness’.

Literacy is built on a child’s early enjoyment of books, words and print, thus creating their future enjoyment of reading and writing.

Literacy skills involve speaking and listening, as well as reading and writing. While the former skills are covered in Communication and Language, Arc Pathway ensures that children’s emerging literacy skills in reading and writing are encouraged all the way through their development; a child’s very early enjoyment for books, words and print is key to their future enjoyment of reading and writing.

Arc Pathway uses 4 criteria (phonemic awareness, books and print, meaningful mark making and fine motor skills). Once these criteria are met, it is much more likely that children’s reading and writing at school age will be a positive experience.

Literacy

Literacy

Literacy is built on a child’s early enjoyment of books, words and print, thus creating their future enjoyment of reading and writing.

Literacy skills involve speaking and listening, as well as reading and writing. While the former skills are covered in Communication and Language, Arc Pathway ensures that children’s emerging literacy skills in reading and writing are encouraged all the way through their development; a child’s very early enjoyment for books, words and print is key to their future enjoyment of reading and writing.

Arc Pathway uses 4 criteria (phonemic awareness, books and print, meaningful mark making and fine motor skills). Once these criteria are met, it is much more likely that children’s reading and writing at school age will be a positive experience.

Mathematics

Mathematics is supported by spontaneity and freedom in early mathematics play, thus providing a positive learning approach for the future.

Young children’s mathematical thinking begins long before they start school. These early numeracy skills influence future achievement in school mathematics. Children’s spontaneity in early mathematics play provides a natural positive learning approach. Practitioners’ understanding of both the importance and development of young children’s emerging numeracy and mathematical skills is key to providing everyday practice that significantly supports numeracy development.

Arc Pathway uses 6 criteria (number, shape, spatial sense, measurement, time and sequence, and patterning). Once these criteria are met, young children can develop a solid foundation on which formal mathematics teaching can build, creating a positive mathematics experience throughout school.

Expressive Arts and Design supports young children’s ability to explore and express themselves and is foundational to their overall creativity and initiative.

Children’s ability to explore and express themselves through Arts and Design is foundational to their overall creativity and initiative. The thinking skills necessary in creative and expressive activities not only boosts a child’s happiness and wellbeing, but also creates vital brain connections that transfer to all other areas of learning, making Expressive Arts and Design a vital foundation for all subject domains.

Arc Pathway uses 4 criteria (imagination, initiative and curiosity, exploring/using media, materials and ideas, and exploring music) Once these criteria are met it is more likely that children’s initiative and curiosity will cultivate their creativity and resourcefulness

Expressive Arts
and Design

Expressive Arts
and Design

Expressive Arts and Design supports young children’s ability to explore and express themselves and is foundational to their overall creativity and initiative.

Children’s ability to explore and express themselves through Arts and Design is foundational to their overall creativity and initiative. The thinking skills necessary in creative and expressive activities not only boosts a child’s happiness and wellbeing, but also creates vital brain connections that transfer to all other areas of learning, making Expressive Arts and Design a vital foundation for all subject domains.

Arc Pathway uses 4 criteria (imagination, initiative and curiosity, exploring/using media, materials and ideas, and exploring music) Once these criteria are met it is more likely that children’s initiative and curiosity will cultivate their creativity and resourcefulness

Understanding
the World

Understanding the World is crucial in discovering what children already know and uncovering the understanding of what they have yet to develop.

‘You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than a year of conversation.’ Plato

Children are experts in their own world, each possessing personal working theories about people and things that are familiar to them. Observing children in their natural and personal world is fundamental in learning about what children already know and uncovering the understanding of they have yet to develop. A child’s natural urge to explore means that practitioners can use this inclination to provide the much-needed stimuli that will motivate learning

Arc Pathway uses 4 criteria (people, culture and communities, the world, technology and problem solving) Once these criteria are met it is much more likely that children will be able to develop positive attitudes to observing and understanding their world, applying and testing ideas and in collecting and organising information.

Supporting the practitioner

Throughout this system, practitioners will be able to:

  • Establish individual children’s starting points through Starting Point Assessments
  • Identify effective, targeted next steps play-based activities to support prioritised areas of learning
  • Identify key learning principles that underpin a particular milestone/outcome
  • Pinpoint significant factors that may affect a child’s learning
  • Highlight desired characteristics of effective learning
  • View progress graphs that show a child’s pattern of learning and development over time

Supporting the parent

Throughout this system, parents will be able to:

  • Log in to their child’s learning journal at any time to view assessments, observations and reports
  • View clear visual arcs that display their child’s development and progress
  • Identify key learning principles that underpin a particular milestone/outcome
  • View their child’s next steps and add special moments from their home environment
  • Receive alerts to any new information about their child

Try ARC PATHWAY for yourself!