Sustained Shared Thinking and Emotional Wellbeing (SSTEW) Scale

The SSTEW scale assesses social and emotional quality in early childhood education.

Program details

  • Priority area: Wellbeing (social and emotional)
  • Primary audience: Educators
  • Delivery mode: Group training, resources (books, kits, manuals)
  • Strength of evidence: Scale
  • AEDC sub-domains:
    • Emotional maturity anxious and fearful behaviour
    • Emotional maturity aggressive behaviour
    • Emotional maturity hyperactivity and inattentive behaviour
    • Social competence responsibility and respect
  • Item cost: Low (<$200 per person/item)

Program description

The Sustained Shared Thinking and Emotional Wellbeing Scale (SSTEW) is part of the Curriculum and Intentional Quality Rating Scales, designed to assess quality in all 5 of the child developmental domains. Other scales are MOVERS, SSTEW, ECERS-R/E. All of these scales are interlinked and designed using a similar format to enhance use.

SSTEW specifically assesses quality of the environment and pedagogy in the social and emotional child developmental domains. It has 5 subscales:

  • building trust, confidence and independence
  • social and emotional wellbeing
  • supporting and extending language and communication
  • supporting learning and critical thinking
  • assessing learning and language.

Training in SSTEW can be completed in conjunction with training in the other scales: MOVERS, ECERS-E and ECERS-R.

Detailed cost

  • Workshops: costs vary, depending on location and number of participants and scales taught.
  • Scale manual: between $25 and $50 (excluding postage), depending on bookseller.

Implementation considerations

  • Target population: early childhood teachers.
  • Program/practice descriptions and details: the SSTEW scale is designed to be used for research, self-evaluation and improvement, audit and regulation. Using the SSTEW scale alongside other environment scales (see Program description) gives users a more complete picture of what high-quality early childhood education and care can look like. It is aspirational in that it considers high-quality pedagogy and practice.
  • Factors to consider: training may be available on weekends to alleviate back fill requirements. The provider may be able to conduct training sessions in particular local areas if interest is sufficient.
  • Training requirements: minimum of 20 participants and maximum of 40. Training for 2 scales takes 5 days; training for one scale takes 3.5 days. Both can be completed over 6 months. This training includes face-to-face training and phone support.
  • Supervision/coaching: ongoing training in administration and use of the scale is available.
  • Staffing: services should consider the potential cost of backfill.
  • Tools and systems: the SSTEW scale can be used alongside other environmental scales such as ECERS-E and ECERS-R.
  • Australian Experience: training is offered by Early Start from the University of Wollongong and has been tested and run with Australian educators.

VEYLDF alignment

Item uses these practice principles

  • Reflective practice
  • Partnerships with families
  • High expectations for every child
  • Respectful relationships and responsive engagement
  • Equity and diversity
  • Assessment for learning and development
  • Integrated teaching and learning approaches

Item responds to these sub-outcomes

Children become strong in their social, emotional and spiritual wellbeing.