Observe the child in daily routines. Record or write down the conversation for later analysis.
Elicit complex sentences by stating, “I wonder why those animals are heading to the barn. (e.g., “They are going to the barn because they want to sleep.”) Ask questions such as, “Which baby is that?” to elicit dependent clauses.
The child creates complex sentences by combining two simple sentences, (e.g., “I’m going outside, and I’m going to swing.”) They also incorporate dependent clauses (e.g., “I’m going outside so I can swing.”)
Encourage early childhood educators and parents to model complex sentences, particularly ones using but, or, because, then, etc. These words allow children to express more complex relationships.
North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, 2015
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