Communication ​Standard 1: 

Observes, listens, and​ responds to the comm​​​unication of others.


Child attends to, understands, and responds to communication and language ​from others.


Child learns from communication and language experiences with others.

​ IT-LC 7

Child understands an increasing number of words used in communication with others.

Attends and responds to familiar voices, sounds, and faces.

  • Christie turns her head in the direction of her mother’s voice.
  • Natalie’s father visits her in her childcare classroom, and she watches his face intently while he gives her a bottle.
  • Scottie turns away from the toy he is playing with and listens to his dad's voice as he enters the classroom.
  • When he hears the bell his teacher uses to signal clean up time, Jimmy stops what he’s doing and starts to clean up.
  • Maria signs “Mother” when she sees her mother’s face through the window in the classroom.

Establishes joint attention.

  • Clarissa looks at the mobile as her caregiver points to it.
  • Juan looks at the big book as his mother reads from the page.
  • Gracie feels the textures of the bumpy ball as her early interventionist holds it in front of her and looks at it with her.
  • When Tyree’s caregiver points to a butterfly, Tyree turns to look and reaches out to try to touch it. 

Comprehends and responds to familiar words that are spoken and/or communicated using alternative communication methods.

  • When asked, “Do you want to go bye-bye?” Tian kicks his legs with excitement.
  • When asked, “Where is your blanket?” Mimi reaches for it.
  • Justus stops walking after his teacher signs “Wait” when they reach the door.
  • When asked which is his favorite center, Goshen points to the picture of the blocks on his communication board.
  • Cody goes to the art center to help clean when the teacher sings the Clean Up song.

Responds to emotions expressed by other people.

  • Josie returns her mommy’s smile.
  • Benjamin repeats his silly dance when the other children laugh. 
  • When Emmy begins to cry Josie gently pats her arm.

Recognizes and responds appropriately to non-verbal communication and gestures.

  • Nan waves “bye-bye” after her sister waves to her.
  • Mickey crawls over to his caregiver after she gestures to him to come to her.
  • When her teacher holds out her arms, Kiyon extends her arms to be picked up.

Participates in turn-taking.

  • Carly imitates the smacking sound her caregiver makes and then waits for him to repeat it again.
  • As Charlotte’s mother gets ready to leave for work, she blows a kiss to Charlotte and Charlotte blows a kiss back. 
  • After his caregiver reminds him that we take turns talking, Ryan listens briefly while Kiley speaks, then starts talking again.

Responds to simple questions, requests, or directions.

  • Dajun hands her empty cup to her caregiver when asked to do so.
  • Deidre points to her eyes, nose, and mouth when asked to do so.
  • Olivia signs, “no” when asked if she wants a nap.
  • Joanie’s developmental interventionist signs the words: cow, house, tree and car.  Joanie points to each picture appropriately on the picture board.
  • When Daddy asks, “How did you hurt your knee?”  Marissa shows her knee and says, “I falled down.”
  • Mallory follows through with completing her caregiver’s two-step directions to take the book to the circle area and sit down.

Demonstrates understanding of a growing number and variety of vocabulary words.

  • Carrie names members of her family upon requests.
  • As Sierra’s caregiver reads Baby: First Words to her, Sierra points out the objects her caregiver names.
  • Matthew responds appropriately to common words and phrases, such as eat, juice, more milk, go bye-bye.
  • Sivonne names common objects in the environment: chair, table, flower, tree, dog, cat, toys. 
  • Jonathon pushes the wagon when Daddy says, “Push it hard.”
  • During outside play time, the teacher signs “run fast” and Bailey runs as hard and fast as she can.
  • Gary puts the toy car under the table when his friend tells him to hide it there. 
  • Tracy shouts, “my doll” when she sees Sharon touch it.

Demonstrates understanding of longer and/or more complex sentences that refer to objects and activities the child has experienced firsthand.

  • Jenny smiles and responds excitedly when her caregiver says, “When it’s snack time, we’ll have some orange juice.”
  • Wade quickly drinks the last of his milk after his teacher says, “When you finish eating, it will be center time.”
  • Ryan starts putting the blocks on the shelf after Ms. Sheila reminds the class, “It’s time to clean up so we can go outside.”

Demonstrates understanding of words and ideas from stories, rhymes, and songs being read/sung aloud.

  • Kim and her friend, Nhu, go outside to look for butterflies after listening to a story about them. Kim excitedly points out a blue and black butterfly to Nhu. 
  • Ethan identifies his head, shoulders, knees and toes after his caregiver sings the song with the class.
  • Imni tells her early interventionist that Old MacDonald has lots of animals after singing the Old MacDonald song with her class.​

Communication Standard 2:

Demonstrates communication skills in order to express self.


Child communicates needs and wants non-verbally and by using ​language.


Child uses non-verbal communication and language to engage others in interaction.


Child initiates non-verbal communication and language to learn and gain information

Solicits attention and initiates communication nonverbally.

  • As Tovia looks intently at her caregiver, he starts to sing to ​her softly.
  • When Patty sees her caregiver near her crib, she moves her arms and legs excitedly. 
  • Royce begins to cry when his caregiver sets him down and starts to walk away.
  • Haleigh walks up beside her teacher, grabs her arm and pulls her toward the block center.

Responds nonverbally to communication from others.

  • Dennis turns and looks at Daddy when his caregiver asks, “Where’s Daddy?”
  • When her teacher asks, “Are you finished with your juice?”  Crystal nods her head.
  • Gayle points to her nose when asked, “Where’s your nose?”
  • Artura walks toward the door after his teacher says, “Time to go home.” 

Uses eye contact, gestures, and/or movements to express self and indicate wants and needs.

  • Lela looks at her caregiver and then at the bottle of juice.
  • Kayla puts her arms out to be picked up.
  • Melee signs “All done” when she finishes her breakfast.
  • Andy shakes his head “no” when he’s asked to finish eating his beans.
  • Luke points to the toy car that he wants.
  • Jack stomps his feet and scowls when he hears the cleanup song. 
  • Nena pulls her friend to the window to watch the bulldozer outside.

Uses gestures for greetings and conversational rituals.

  • Morris waves as his dad leaves for work.
  • Angelica runs to the door and hugs her teacher when she arrives.
  • Marti indicates that she wants her friend Maria to come with her by grabbing her hand.

Child communicates needs and wants non-verbally and by using language.


Child uses non-verbal communication and language to engage others in interaction.


Child uses increasingly complex language in conversation with others.


Child initiates non-verbal communication and language to learn and gain information.


Child uses an increasing number of words in communication and conversation with others.

​IT-LC 9

Child attends to, repeats, and uses some rhymes, phrases, or refrains from ​stories or songs.

Varies ​pitch, length, and volume of vocalizations.

  • Jay vocalizes to get his caregiver’s attention.
  • Emma jabbers softly and then more loudly as her caregiver talks with her during diaper change time.
  • Camille’s cries become louder as she waits while her caregiver warms her bottle.

Makes an increasing number and types of sounds, including both vowels and consonants.

  • Kai coos “aah” and “eeh”
  • Elizabeth says “babababa” in play. 
  • Nancy says “dada” when she sees her daddy.

Expresses happiness or delight through squeals, laughter, and other sounds.

  • Joey squeals in delight as his caregiver lifts him up high above his head.
  • Camryn laughs as her caregiver makes funny faces at her.
  • Fayre signs, Yay!” and claps when his friend returns to class after being away for several days.

Imitates sounds and words and engages in vocal turn-taking.

  • Susie babbles “dadada and bababa” to herself.
  • Nate vocalizes “mama” after his caregiver does. They continue to repeat the game for several turns.
  • When his teacher labels a cow in the picture book he is reading, William repeats “cow.”
  • Leila copies the sound of a fire engine as she runs around the playground.

Uses specific vocalizations that have meaning to primary caregivers.

  • Margarita calls “ma” when her mother walks out of the room.
  • Noah says “ba” ball and “coo” for cookie.
  • Lee looks at one of the children in the group and says, “Ninya”. The caregiver responds, “You want me to see your friend Virginia.” 

Uses sounds, vocalizations, and words with inflection in a conversational manner.

  • Pepito jabbers and changes pitch as he “talks” to his caregiver.
  • Kami uses a combination of jabbering and several recognizable words as she lowers her voice and speaks softly to her doll.
  • When Jason’s teacher tells him it’s time for snack, he jumps up and down and says in a high-pitched voice, “Oh good! I’m hungry!”

Uses an increasing number of single words from his/her home language for a variety of purposes.

  • Max signs the word, “sleep” as he looks at a picture of the three bears in their beds.
  • Kendall names a spoon, cup, and ball when her early interventionist points to each and asks, “What’s this?”
  • Olivia signs “open” as she hands a box to her caregiver.
  • When Ana’s teacher asks her if she has a pet, Ana answers, “Doggie.”
  • Benjamin asks for toys and food items by name. 

Uses own name to refer to self.

  • When asked her name, Susan replies “Susan”.
  • When Dad asks, “Who’s that in the mirror?”  Elijah names “I-jah”.

Uses phrases and/or simple sentences in his/her home language.

  • Sammy asks, “What that?”
  • Kendall says, “Give me cookie.”
  • Abby tells her friend, “I go to McDonalds.” 
  • When his dad comes to pick him up, Brant tells him, “I do swinging.”

Uses a larger variety of words, such as plurals and pronouns.

  • When daddy asks, “Is that my shoe?” and points to the child’s shoe, Celeste says, “Mine.”
  • Christopher says, “I go get it.”
  • Jonnie tells his friend, “I have lots of trucks.”
  • “That’s her book,” Micah tells his friend.

Asks questions in his/her home language.

  • When his Daddy leaves him at childcare, Toby asks his caregiver, “Daddy work?”
  • As the boys and girls get ready to leave childcare, Izzy asks, “Where’s mommy?”

Talks about familiar people, activities and/or story characters, but may make grammatical errors or use words incorrectly.

  • As they are cleaning up the housekeeping center, Alex tells his caregiver, “We play house.”
  • Adam tells his friend, “I like Bow Pish (Rainbow Fish).”
  • During group time, Lynley shares, “We went to the park, and we saw a doggie.”

Repeats rhymes and repetitive words and sounds.

  • Malcolm’s teacher starts the rhyme, “One, two buckle my shoe.”  Malcolm repeats, “One, two, buckle shoe.” 
  • Emmya joins in as her friend sings Old MacDonald Had a Farm,” by singing “Eeeeeoh, eeeeeoh, eeeeeeoh.”
  • Chad likes to repeat “swallowed a fly” from his favorite story.
  • Dontrell likes to sing the words “Hush-a-bye, don’t you cry” from his favorite lullaby.

Carries on a conversation.

  • When sitting together at the table rolling play dough, Louie says to Manny, “I make a big snake!” Manny responds, “Mine bigger!” as he rolls his playdough. 
  • When returning to class after the weekend, Renee tells her teacher, “I go granny’s.” Her teacher responds by asking Renee, “Did you have a good time?” Renee responds, “We make cookies.” When her teacher says, “I bet they were good,” Renee jumps up and down saying, “Yes, good!”

Communication Standard 3:

Demonstrates interest and engages in early ​​literacy activities.

IT-LC 10

Child handles books and relates them to their stories or information.

IT-LC 11

Child recognizes pictures and some symbols, signs, or words.

IT-LC 12

Child comprehends meaning from pictures and stories

​IT-LC 13

Child attends to, repeats, and uses some rhymes, phrases, or refrains from stories or songs.

Looks at and e​xplores age-appropriate books that represent the child’s culture or ​interests.

  • Darla scrunches up the cloth book in her fists and brings it to her mouth.  
  • Kirsten waves her arms and reaches for the cloth book that her caregiver holds out to her.
  • With encouragement from the early interventionist, Sierra feels the different textures in the Pat the Bunny book.
  • Hosea opens and closes the board book repeatedly.
  • Seth sits comfortably in his teacher’s lap as she reads to him. He helps turn the pages and feels the bumps as she guides his fingers over the Braille print.

Looks at pictures and photos briefly.

  • Dan looks briefly at a picture in the book as his caregiver turns the pages.
  • Beth looks at the picture on the wall of her classroom as her Mommy brings her near it and talks about the horses in the picture. 
  • Katie looks at the photo album while her caregiver holds her. 

Shows interest as age-appropriate books reflecting the child’s culture or interests are read aloud.

  • Shawn gestures and babbles as his caregiver repeats the rhymes from the Mother Goose book. 
  • Madison sits close to her Aunt Jenny as she reads to her in the classroom’s book corner and shows Madison the pictures in the book.
  • Juan hands his teacher the Down by the Bay book to read again.
  • Ryan sits near the teacher, quietly rolling toy trucks on the floor near him as his teacher reads a short book aloud. 

Shows increasing skills in handling books and understanding their features, such as the front of the book.

  • Josephine turns the pages of the book 2 or 3 at a time while she is looking at it.  
  • Leonard turns the pages of Brown Bear, Brown Bear while holding the book upside down.
  • Rudy rotates the book after looking at a picture and seeing the clown in the picture is upside down.
  • Isabel picks up the board book and turns it right side up before showing the pictures to her baby doll. 
  • Samuel looks at the pictures in a favorite board book, starting at the beginning and turning the pages one at a time.

Shows preferences for specific books and stories that are her/his favorite.

  • Domingo chooses between the two books that his caregiver offers before naptime. 
  • Luli bounces up and down when her teacher holds up the book she is preparing to read at story time. It is Luli’s favorite book.
  • Kaylee selects her favorite book about construction for her teacher to read again.

As his caregiver reads the last line of the story and closes the book, Mark turns the book to the front cover and opens it, indicating he would like to read it again.

  • When asked what book she wants to hear, Chloe says, “Mouse story again”.
  • Anticipates/recalls text of a known story that someone has read to him/her.
  • Janine supplies the missing word when her caregiver pauses in the story.  
  • Lucas repeats with the teacher Hats for Sale as the children listen to the story.
  • Frankie laughs when the early interventionist reads the text of a familiar book incorrectly.

Shows the ability to listen to books for longer periods of time.

  • Martha listens to several short books that are read at one sitting. 
  • Zachary listens to Goodnight Moon two times before naptime. 

Grasps thick crayons, markers, and other writing tools and scribbles randomly.

  • Hannah holds the crayons in her fist and “jabs” at the paper making dots of color.
  • Sara holds a marker in her fist and scribbles all over her paper.
  • Quinn uses a paintbrush to make random marks on paper hanging at the easel.

Recalls specific characters, story lines, and/or information in a book that is read aloud.

  • William claps his hands like the character Cuddles does while his caregiver reads the book.
  • Sophie remembers what a character does in a familiar story and tells her teacher, “Spot put the baby in”.
  • Alison asks, “Where bear?” as she opens the flap in the book.

Notices that there are both print and pictures on a page.

  • Ray glances between the picture and the print as his Nana points to the print while reading aloud.
  • Ginny points to the pictures and the print while looking at the books by herself.

Uses a variety of writing tools to make more orderly marks, such as lines and circular shapes, and talks about drawings.

  • Ian uses a jumbo marker to make circles and lines on his paper.
  • Cornett makes a circular shape with a red crayon and then signs the word “apple.”
  • Miriam makes lines and squiggles with a pencil as she tells a story.
  • Keenan makes several oval shapes with the paintbrush and exclaims, “There’s Mama!”
​ IT-LC 9

Child attends to, repeats, and uses some rhymes, phrases, or refrains from ​stories or songs.

Attends and responds to stories, rhymes, songs, word games and fingerplays.

  • When her caregiver sings a familiar song, Jordan stops her play to listen.
  • Francesca claps when her caregiver recites a favorite nursery rhyme.
  • Mateo rocks back and forth as he watches his teacher make hand motions while singing Wheels on the Bus. 

Participates in stories, rhymes, songs, word games and fingerplays.

  • Jacob joins in with hand motions when he hears the Itsy, Bitsy, Spider book. 
  • During the Open, Shut Them fingerplay, Adrian wiggles his fingers, touches his chin, and claps his hands. 
  • Addie signs the words to the good morning greeting rhyme during large group time.
  • Bryce dances in circles with the other toddlers as they sing, Ring Around the Rosie.

Asks to hear a specific story, rhyme, or song.

  • Maya asks her teacher to repeat a story, saying, “Tell us the story about how you went to school when you were little.”
  • Hannah signs “more” after playing “Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes” with her classmates.
  • Sandy asks her caregiver to repeat Mary Had a Little Lamb. 

Repeats predictable, repetitive phrases.

  • When Callie’s teacher sings, If You’re Happy and You Know It, Callie joins in with “Clap your hands”. 
  • Suni runs around the playground repeating her favorite line from the Baby Shark Song, “Run-away doo, doo, doo, doo, doo, doo.”
  • Henry repeats the phrase, “Going on a bear hunt” as he marches around the classroom.​
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