Lesson 301

Lesson 301

Developing Comprehension of
Simple Sentences of 5-6 words




To teach your child to

a) listen and understand sentences of at least 5-6 words
b) understand and use early connecting words such as ‘
and’ and ‘then

Points To Remember

1. Always begin by using longer sentences that combine known vocabulary.
2. Make sure you include conversational sentences to encourage the child to respond to someone’s comments.
3. Use a variety of sentences that contain descriptions, actions, lists of items, tell a story etc.
4. Remember to model the sentences and engage the child in conversation. Avoid asking questions to ‘test’ the child’s understanding.


This is a structured activity to help your child listen and understand longer and more complex sentences. Use longer and more complex sentences that combine descriptions, actions, and familiar vocabulary throughout your day in addition to doing structured activities like this one. Your child will begin to understand these sentences over time, and will soon be trying to use longer sentences to communicate.

Choose pictures, stickers, photographs of your child or a family vacation, or a story to talk about. What you choose should be interesting and engaging for your child. Watch the video clip for an example of an activity using stickers. This is part of an overall story-telling activity.

Then, follow the instructions given below:

1. Choose pictures, stickers, photographs of your child or a family vacation,or a story to talk about. What you choose should be interesting and engaging for your child and you should be able to do something with the pictures after you’ve talked about them e.g. tell a story, make a photo album. You can also choose an experience activity such as baking cookies, a craft activity, etc.

2. Think about the sentences you will use and pay attention to the length and variety of the sentences. You should be using at least 5-6 words in your sentences, and at least two or three different types of sentences (descriptions, lists, explanations etc). The most common mistake is using shorter sentences. It is okay if your sentences are longer, but they should not be shorter.

3. Go through your items and talk about them; make sure your comments do not always relate to the object your child is looking at.

4. Continue until you have gone through at least 5 pictures/objects (or completed the experience activity).

5. Then make your experience book or tell your story using the objects. If you used an experience story for this activity, review with your child what you did during the activity.

6. Carefully go through your day and what your child does. Change the way you are speaking to your child in each of these situations. For example, when its time for breakfast, instead of saying "It's time to eat!" or "It's time for breakfast!", use a sentence such as “I’m so hungry! Let’s have some cereal and a bagel for breakfast”.

Video Clips



In earlier experience activities, you probably used phrases with about 3-4 words such as -- "the dishes are dirty!", "wash the dishes", etc.

Now, for the same activities, make sure you expand your use of sentences. Instead, use sentences like “ Help me wash all the dirty dishes in the sink. We need to clean up and put them away!"

What Next

Continue with this activity and move on to Lesson 302. Do both Lessons as part of your daily structured activities.

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