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No-Glamour® Junior Answering Questions
Ages: 4-9   Grades: PreK-4

Students develop core classroom language skills with cut-and-paste story sequences that guide them to answer questions and construct and tell their own stories.


  • Answer wh- questions
  • Develop narrative language
  • Problem solve, predict, and draw inferences
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*The CD contains the complete book.  All pages are printable.
** This is a Cloud E-Book that is accessible from any device with Internet access. .

Bring some innovative techniques and tools to your therapy room!  Teach question skills and narrative language with:

  • amusing, illustrated story sequences
  • hierarchy of wh- question difficulty
  • student cut-and-paste activities to create their own stories
  • guided lessons help students transition to story-telling
  • personalized application questions help students use prior knowledge to expand language usage

Use the activities to meet goals for these classroom language skills:

  • wh- question comprehension and answering
  • story comprehension
  • sequencing
  • syntax
  • vocabulary
  • thinking and problem-solving
  • predicting and inferring

Each of the 45 lessons progress in this order: 

  • Activity 1—Children listen to a three-part story and follow along by looking at the story illustrations.  Then, they answer wh- questions about the story.  There are three levels of question difficulty:
    • Level 1—basic content questions
    • Level 2—inference questions
    • Level 3—problem-solving, predicting, and expansion questions
  • Activity 2—The child constructs his own story loosely based on the story in the first activity.  Wh- questions are provided to help him plan his narrative.  The child chooses pictures included in each lesson to illustrate his story.    
  • Activity 3—The child sequences the pictures he selected in Activity 2 to make a three-, four-, or five-part story and glues them on the activity page.  He tells his story with the therapist providing question prompts as needed.  Personal application questions give the child practice in relating information and experiences.  Use these question prompts to delve deeper into complex wh- question forms and develop skills for problem solving, memory, inferencing, and predicting.

Copyright © 2012

141 pages

  • Researchers found six strategies that improve reading comprehension, including answering questions.  Questions help children focus on the story, giving readers a purpose for reading and encouraging them to scrutinize what they are reading (Armbruster, Lehr, & Osborn, 2003).
  • The Committee on Early Childhood Pedagogy substantiated many issues that contribute to positive outcomes in reading achievement (Bowman, Donovan, & Burns, 2001).
    • What happens at home is as important as what happens in the classroom.
    • Asking questions, engaging children in conversations, and expanding children's language contribute to the development of language skills.
    • Listening comprehension, the ability to understand oral language, is a necessary skill for children to have as they get older.
  • Children who are developing normally understand and respond to wh- questions very early.  Ask a toddler, "Where's Mommy?" and he will look for his mother.  This is not the case for children with language delays.  These children need specific intervention strategies that teach the semantic, syntactic, and grammatical aspects of questions (Wilson, Fox, & Pascoe, 2010).
  • Both comprehension and production should be considered in all areas of grammar.  Particular attention should be paid to syntactic movement, especially of wh- questions (Taylor-Goh, 2005).

No-Glamour Junior Answering Questions incorporates these principles and is also based on expert professional practice.


Armbruster, B.B., Lehr, F., & Osborn, J. (2003). A child becomes a reader: Birth through preschool. Retrieved March 9, 2012, from

Bowman, B.T., Donovan, M.S., & Burns, M.S. (Eds.). (2001). Eager to learn: Educating our preschoolers. Washington, DC: National Academy Press.

Taylor-Goh, S. (2005) Royal college of speech & language therapists: Clinical guidelines. United Kingdom: Speechmark.

Wilson, M.S., Fox, B.J., & Pascoe, J.P. (2010). Developing question asking and answering: Theory & research based intervention. Winooski, VT: Laureate Learning Systems.




Typically-developing children build their vocabularies in a variety of ways, including asking questions about people, events, and objects in their environments.  However, children with communication disorders, including specific language impairment, Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), and mental disabilities, need direct teaching of how to ask and answer questions.  They also need direct instruction to differentiate wh- questions correctly (Parnell, Patterson, & Harding, 1984).  As children progress from preschool to elementary school, there are fewer visual supports in the classroom, resulting in an increase in verbal demands.  Children with communication disorders struggle in the classroom environment because they have difficulty answering questions with complex syntax structures (Deevy & Leonard, 2004).  Children who lack appropriate asking- and answering-question skills may experience educational failure because they don't have equal access to the curriculum as compared to typically-developing peers (Wilkinson & Silliman, 2000).

Oral language skills are the building blocks for reading readiness.  That knowledge, along with the research findings above, led us to recognize the value of an intervention tool that uses best practice methods to provide in-depth therapy for improved question-answering skills.  We reflected on how frequently children with communication disorders confuse wh- question forms and took into account that these children, especially when they're younger, benefit from using visual supports to learn new language skills.  As a result, we developed No-Glamour Junior Answering Questions to use with a variety of preschool and early elementary children on your caseload.  It provides you with the materials you need to improve a child's overall vocabulary and syntax, ability to ask and answer questions, and narrative discourse and comprehension.

No-Glamour Junior Answering Questions uses illustrated, sequenced stories and provides three types of lessons: three-part stories, four-part stories, and five-part stories.  There are 15 lessons for each type (45 total), and each lesson includes three activities.


Activity 1
The first activity presents a three-part, illustrated story.  You read the story and have the child follow along by looking at the story illustrations.  Then you use the story to expose the child to a variety of wh- question forms, drawing from three levels of comprehension questions.

  • Level 1 – basic content questions
  • Level 2 – inference questions
  • Level 3 – problem-solving, predicting, and expansion questions

Activity 2
The second activity provides the child with guided instruction and visual support to plan and tell his own story, which will be loosely based on the story from the first activity.  The child is presented with three, four, or five questions that he answers to plan his narrative, helping him determine the character, setting, and brief plot of his story.  (The number of questions the child answers depends on whether he is planning a three-part, four-part, or five-part story.)  Each question has three pictures the child can choose from to answer the question.  These pictures will later provide the necessary visual support the child needs to tell his story.  There is also an example story you may tell the child to use as a reference for planning and telling his narrative.

This second page of each lesson is vital for a child who realizes his verbal skills are weak and, therefore, avoids verbal-only tasks.  The pictures serve as visual prompts for the child's narrative development.  They help the child think about wh- questions more abstractly, and they provide the child with language disorders the confidence to tell a sequenced story using visual support.  This is important since it improves the child's language skills while providing him with an acceptable level of assistance.


Activity 3
On this page the child sequences the pictures he selected in Activity 2 and glues them in the correct order on the empty boxes.  Each empty box has a temporal word (e.g., first, next) and a number printed under it to help the child make the semantic connection between the vocabulary and the numbers.

You then ask the child to tell his story to you or peers in his language therapy group.  Depending on the child's language level and his ability to tell a cohesive story, ask all the Story Question Prompts (maximum assistance), only a few questions (minimum to moderate assistance), or none of the question prompts (independent level).  As the child progresses through the lessons and his language skills improve, he will need less prompting to share a narrative that others comprehend.  However, children will benefit from always answering the Personal Application Prompts since these questions delve deeper into complex wh- question forms and the critical thinking skills of problem solving, memory, inferencing, and predicting.

No-Glamour Junior Answering Questions systematically builds children's language skills using three-part stories, four-part stories, and five-part stories.  The book focuses on a variety of language skills, including temporal vocabulary, syntax, narrative structure, and answering wh- questions that address both basic comprehension and higher-level thinking skills.  These language skills help children succeed in classroom and home environments.  We hope you and your students enjoy working through the activities in this book!

LinguiSystems Staff


Deevy, P., & Leonard, L.B. (2004). The comprehension of wh- questions in children with specific language impairment. Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, 47, 802-815.

Parnell, M.M., Patterson, S.S., & Harding, M.A. (1984). Answers to wh- questions: A developmental study. Journal of Speech and Hearing Research, 27, 297-305.

Wilkinson, L.C., & Silliman, E.R. (2000). Classroom language and literacy learning. In M.L. Kamil, P.B. Mosenthal, P.D. Pearson, & R. Barr, (Eds.), Handbook of Reading Research: Vol. III. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.