North Carolina Early Learning and Development Progressions: Birth to Five

Domain: NC Foundations for Early Learning: Language Development and Communication (LDC)

Subdomain: Learning to Communicate

Goal: Children ask and answer questions in order to seek help, get information, or clarify something that is not understood.

Skill Progression: Answers questions

Age: 36-42 Months

Click here to go to all skills for ages 36-42 Months.

Understands “how many,” “whose,” and “why” questions

Situations for Observation of Skill

Observe the adult and child reading a counting book such as The Very Hungry Caterpillar.

Elicitation Strategy

The adult can ask questions about “how many” of the different items; “whose” fruit; and “why” the caterpillar is eating the fruit.

Behavior Observed

The child understands that “how many” is asking for a number. Answers for up to three items and counts with one-to-one correspondence up to five, but does not know the total. Understands the question “why” and tries to give reasons, even if they don’t make sense.

Routines-based Intervention (Embedded Instruction)

Encourage early childhood educators and parents to use numbers and counting throughout the daily routines. During daily chores, such as folding laundry, parents can ask questions such as, “Whose pants are these?” While cooking ask, “Why do we need to stir this up?” These questions stimulate children to make associations and think about reasons for actions.

 North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, 2015

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