Barbara Soots, Washington OSPI OER Project, Karma Hugo, Jennifer Cronquist, Washington OSPI Mathematics Department, Gretchen Stahr Breunig
Early Childhood Development
Material Type:
Teaching/Learning Strategy
Preschool, Lower Primary, Graduate / Professional, Career / Technical, Adult Education
  • Wa-early-learning
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    PreK - Grade 3 Reentry: Developmental Progressions

    PreK - Grade 3 Reentry: Developmental Progressions


    Development is sequential, with skills building on prior knowledge and learning. Young students pass through many key milestones on their way toward end-of-year standards. These progressions in literacy and numeracy show how learning unfolds across multiple grade levels allows teachers to identify what knowledge and abilities students possess at the start of the year and what comes next, so they can meet each student where they are and address any gaps that may exist.

    Developmental Progression Resources

    The COVID-19 pandemic may have disrupted opportunities young students have to participate in classroom-based learning with peers, but children have undoubtedly continued to learn and grow. Even without disruptions to their formal education, children’s development across PreK–3rd grades is naturally wide-ranging. Students who are the same age or are in the same grade can often display differing skills and abilities from one another, based in part on what experiences and opportunities they have had as well as their innate biology and tendencies. Students this age can also experience periods of rapid growth, stagnation, and even regression, at times. The wide range of skills expected at entry to school may be even more pronounced than usual during the 2021-22 school year.

    Examples of developmental progressions available to teachers, PreK–3rd grade include:

    Early Literacy Pathways | OSPI and AESD
    The Early Literacy Pathways support educators, caregivers and families in understanding and supporting children's development in the areas of social-emotional development, cognitive development, language, and literacy development, and reading and writing development.

    Learning Pathways in Numeracy | OSPI and AESD
    The Learning Pathways in Numeracy features progression pathways for the development of numeracy concepts. It can be used as a quick reference to isolate children’s learning along a particular pathway and determine the next steps in learning that would move children forward along a particular pathway.

    GOLD®| Teaching Strategies
    As part of the WaKIDS Whole-child Assessment teachers use the developmental progressions from Teaching Strategies, called GOLD® Objectives for Development and Learning, to assess students across six domains: social-emotional, cognitive, language, physical, literacy and math. The developmental progressions in Teaching Strategies GOLD® span from birth through 3rd grade and may be useful for identifying the sequence of development in high-priority areas for students across the early grades. District administrators and teachers trained to use Teaching Strategies GOLD® can access the GOLD® Objectives for Development and Learning in the My Teaching Strategies® online assessment platform

    Washington State Early Learning and Development Guidelines: Birth Through 3rd Grade | OSPI, Thrive by Five, and Washington State Department of Early Learning
    The Washington State Early Learning and Development Guidelines: Birth Through 3rd Grade outlines what children know and are able to do at different stages of their development through third grade. This resource was designed with both educators and families in mind.


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    Attribution and License


    Icons from the Noun Projectgrowth by Rockicon, Family by DewDrops, evaluative assessment by ahmad, resources by Becris, School by PJ Souders from the Noun Project


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    Except where otherwise noted, this curated resource collection by the Washington Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction and Washington Association of Educational Service Districts is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. All logos and trademarks are property of their respective owners.

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