Home | Resources | Speech and Language | Wh- Questions and Why They’re Important
Asking and answering ‘Wh-‘ questions is a key part of language development. Children must be able to understand questions in order to have a conversation and pass on information to others. Starting to ask and answer ‘Wh-‘ questions is a milestone that most children start to reach between the age of 1 and 2 years, and they’ll continue to develop their receptive and expressive language in the lead up to school.
Wh-questions are certain types of questions we ask to get information about different things and are used frequently every day at home and in the classroom:
It is important that children ask and answer Wh-questions, as they lay the groundwork for children to participate in conversations, demonstrate knowledge, and collect information about themselves and their world. Children learn Wh-questions in a sequence starting with more concrete questions about their immediate environment – eg.“What” is the earliest question mastered, followed by “Who” and “Where.” Finally, an understanding of “When” and “Why” develop, with “Why” being the most difficult to master.
Our team has developed some practical resources to use with children to build their knowledge of wh- questions.
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