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The Step

About this video

This video takes place in the gross-motor room of a university laboratory child care center and preschool. This room is used for gross-motor activities by all classrooms in the center during inclement weather. Alicia (19 months) and a teacher are moving a soft round bolster around the room to use it as a step. The teacher stands the bolster up on its end and pats the top of it. Alicia follows her actions but then pushes it over so she can pick it up to move it to where she wants it to be, next to the climber. After she gets it in place, she proceeds to climb up the “step” and on to the top of the climber. Spencer has joined Alicia and the teacher at the climber, and the teacher lifts him into the climber, just as Alicia reaches the top.

The teacher provides Alicia with support to move the bolster and supervises her so she can safely use it as a step.



Note: There is a lot of background noise that makes it hard to distinguish the little dialogue there is between the teacher and Alicia, so no transcript is provided.

Illinois Early Learning Guidelines for Children Birth to Age Three and strategies that caregivers used

Self-Regulation: Foundation of Development
Attention Regulation
Children demonstrate the emerging ability to process stimuli, focus and sustain attention, and maintain engagement in accordance with social and cultural contexts.

  • Strategies for interaction (16-24 months): Remain available for the child and respond promptly if he or she asks for help
  • Action: The teacher stays with Alicia as she moves the bolster to where she wants it to be.

Developmental Domain 2: Physical Development & Health
Gross Motor
Children demonstrate strength, coordination, and controlled use of large muscles.

  • Strategies for interaction (16-24 months): Create safe places for the child to climb; remain with the child in order to prevent falling and injury
  • Action: All of the materials in the gross-motor room are appropriate and safe for the young children. The teacher stayed by Alicia and helped her when needed.

Developmental Domain 4: Cognitive Development
Safety & Well-Being
Children demonstrate the emerging ability to recognize risky situations and respond accordingly.

  • Strategies for interaction (16-24 months): Provide a safe, child-proof environment, while providing constant supervision
  • Action: The teacher was in tune with the Alicia and provided supervision without unnecessary interruptions or interventions.

Approaches to Learning
Problem Solving
Children attempt a variety of strategies to accomplish tasks, overcome obstacles, and find solutions to tasks, questions, and challenges.

  • Strategies for interaction (16-24 months): Provide the child with opportunities to solve problems with and without your help; minimize the possibility for the child to become frustrated
  • Action: As Alicia was carrying the bolster and stumbled, the teacher stepped back to let her get up and place the bolster where she wanted it to go.

About this resource

Setting(s) for which the article is intended:
  • Home
  • Family Child Care
  • Child Care Center

Intended audience(s):
  • Parents / Family
  • Teachers / Service providers
  • Faculty / Trainer

Age Levels (the age of the children to whom the article applies):
Related IEL Birth to Three Guidelines:
Reviewed: 2017