Teaching WH- Questions in a Therapeutic Preschool Program

Who, what, when, where, why, and how?
These are seemingly simple questions, yet they drive so many of our daily conversations, whether we realize it or not. As young children are developing their speech and language skills, it is important to learn all of these “WH questions” and how to use them appropriately in an interaction with another person. Every child learns at a different pace, so some children may master language skills very early in development, while others benefit from additional speech-language pathology services. Some children receive speech therapy in a clinical setting or in the home, while other parents will elect to enroll their child in a therapeutic preschool program.

What is a therapeutic preschool program?
A therapeutic preschool program helps children to build pivotal developmental skills if they are experiencing delays and can benefit from additional support. Some of the key areas that a therapeutic preschool will emphasize include ABA therapy (applied behavior analysis), feeding therapy, occupational therapy, speech-language pathology, and more. These classes, which are typically led by certified professionals in the fields, provide support in order to help children meet important milestones.

Why are WH questions important?
WH questions find their way into nearly every conversation, even for young children. Think about it. Even in a preschool setting, a child will need to be able to properly use WH questions to ask any questions and learn more about something. These questions are important for the academic, cognitive, and social development of children. These questions also involve sequencing (order), another important developmental skill.

How can a therapeutic preschool program teach WH questions?
Depending on the abilities and needs of children, there are different strategies that teachers and therapists in a therapeutic preschool program can use to teach WH questions to their students. Flashcards are a trusty tactic for learning many different materials, and WH questions are no different. Adding a visual component to the flashcards can also be beneficial for some children who are still working to develop their language skills.

There are also iPad (or Android tablet) apps that therapists can use if one of their kiddos enjoys learning with a device, as opposed to physical flashcards. Some helpful apps you may want to look into:

Wh Questions – Here is a link to download the app in iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/wh-questions-by-teach-speech/id989346596?mt=8

WH Questions Cards – Here is a link to download the app in iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/wh-question-cards-who-what/id515954148?mt=8

WhQuestions – Here is a link to download the app in iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/whquestions/id348905092?mt=8

Therapists and teachers can also model these questions for children, in order to encourage children to use these questions appropriately (and independently). Teachers and therapists can also share these strategies with parents, so these methods can be practiced in the home setting, as well.

Are you interested in learning more about therapeutic preschool programs in Chicago?
Click the purple button below or call 773-620-7800 to contact CST Academy in order to learn more about the services we provide, including speech-language pathology, ABA therapy, occupational therapy, feeding therapy, and more!