Forms to Fill Out
Please remember to read and review our Guidelines for Observation (GO).
The best times to plan an observation are between 8:30 am - 11:50 am and 3:00pm-5:30 pm.
If you are in a class, please submit your availabilities to observe by filling out the form in the GO to Lemberg's Office at Lemberg Hall.
Information for when you observe in the classroom
We do not have observation rooms or cameras for monitoring our classrooms. Consequently we need to ensure that no more than four people are observing at any time. Exceptions can be made. The observer, researcher, or his/her supervisor or course instructor must make arrangements for the observation with our director, Howard Baker, and a cooperating head teacher.
To do this, please contact Howard Baker by email: email@example.com or call 781-736-2200. You will be asked to supply a brief letter or email explaining the purpose or goals of your observation and also assure us that those you observe will be given anonymity unless you have written consent from the individual to publish your data or communicate about them by name. Failure to do so is subject to prosecution.
Your letter or email may simply state:
- Your name and contact information, the purpose of the study and whether you wish to observe or be a participant observer. (POs are people who wish to engage in activities with children. POs who wish to observe more than once need to fill out our Employment Application available at our website in menu: Job Opportunities. )
- That the observer guarantees the anonymity of the children & teachers observed in any written material, including information shared with a class or professor.
- That the observer guarantees that s/he will not photograph, videotape or tape record while observing unless permission to do so has been given. For this, you will need to use Appendix IV: Application for Recording and Appendix X: Sample Letter for Consent to use sound or image recording.
We are happy to have you observing for a class or for learning more our program or our children! Prior to coming you may find other pages on this website helpful for getting background information on us, our methods, staff and children. You can also find brief staff bios with photos to help you recognize us when you come. It is really important that you read these guidelines too:
- Please do not take photos, or record a child or children with any electronic or video device without prior permission. To get this release contact our director, Howie Baker firstname.lastname@example.org. You may need to get this permission from a child’s parents as well.
- Information gathered during your observation is confidential. Please do not discuss your observations of the children in public spaces where anonymity might be compromised. When writing or speaking about the children observed, please identify them by a pseudonym, such as their first initial or some other made up identifier.
- Dress casually and neatly. Dress knowing that you will be with young children in a school where paint and clay are frequently used. You may also observe while the children are outside and you should have on clothing that will keep you comfortable for doing this for 45 minutes or more.
- On the day you are scheduled to observe, please arrive on time. If you will be delayed or unable to attend email email@example.com or call our office (781-736-2200) and leave a message.
- When you arrive for your observation, report to the Office (2nd Floor Lemberg Hall) to sign-in as a visitor and to have an office member bring you down to meet the Head Teacher in whose classroom you will start your observing. Should no one be in the office, please go directly to the classroom door (1st Floor, Lemberg Hall) and ring the bell for entry. Once inside introduce yourself and ask for one of our Head Teachers (in the morning: Karen or Katharine; in the afternoon: Scott or Mollie). S/he will show you where to put your coat and bags, as well as help you find an appropriate place from which to observe.
- During your observing time, the head teachers will be busy with the children, supervising teaching assistants or speaking with parents. They may not be able to speak with you at length. If you would like to interview one of them or would like to get background or demographic information, please arrange for this with our office staff or director. You can email: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com or call: 781-736-2200.
- During the observation, when a child approaches you and asks what you are doing, please tell her/him that you are here to learn things about the classroom, and you will be writing notes. If a child asks you to help him/her with something (e.g., tie their shoe, put on a coat, pour their drink), if you can do so without disrupting your observation that’s fine but it is usually best to direct them to their teacher or teaching assistant (TA).
- Most observation studies prefer you to be unobtrusive, use a soft voice, and move quietly to minimize your interaction with the children. However a teacher may need to give you directions and guidance, please expect this.
If you are a course instructor wishing to arrange observations for a number of students in your class you will be asked to use a schedule form in which students post their name & email address. Additionally please supply your students with Appendix I: Information for When You Observe in the Classroom. Additional information for your students about our programs including many curricular resources for teachers are found at www.brandeis.edu/lemberg/research. Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to make arrangements for your students.