Group of Children playing outside


Early Childhood Indicators of Progress: Minnesota’s Early Learning Standards


Domain:  Social & Emotional Development

This domain involves children’s feelings about themselves, as well as their interactions and relationships with peers and adults.  Included in this focus are indicators that refer to children’s views of themselves as learners and their sense of responsibility to themselves and others.  Particularly important in this domain are the skills children demonstrate making friends, solving conflicts and functioning effectively in groups.  Within the domain of Social & Emotional Development are the components Emotional Development, Self-Concept, and Social Competence and Relationships.


Children show progress in Emotional Development when they:

1. Demonstrate increasing competency in recognizing and describing own emotions

2. Demonstrate increasing use of words instead of actions to express emotions

3. Begin to understand and respond to others' emotions

4. Begin to show self-regulation to handle emotions appropriately

5. Explore a wide range of emotions in different ways (e.g., through play, art, music, dance)

6. Respond to praise, limits, and correction



Children will show progress in Self-Concept when they:

1. Begin to experiment with own potential and show confidence in own abilities

2. Demonstrate increasing self-direction and independence

3. Develop an awareness of self as having certain abilities, characteristics, and preferences

4. Begin to develop awareness, knowledge, and acceptance of own gender and cultural identity



Children will show progress in Social Competence and Relationships when they:

1. Interact easily with one or more children

2. Interact easily with familiar adults

3. Approach others with expectations of positive interactions

4. Begin to participate successfully as a member of a group

5. Use play to explore, practice, and understand social roles and relationships

6. Begin to understand others' rights and privileges

7. Sustain interaction by cooperating, helping, sharing, and expressing interest

8. Seek adult help when needed for emotional support, physical assistance, social interaction, and approval

9. Use words and other constructive strategies to resolve conflicts


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