This article presents a historical description of and research related to the development, validation, and combined use of the multiple editions of the Bracken Basic Concept Scale and its companion curriculum, the Bracken Concept Development Program. In tandem, the scale and curriculum were designed to assess and teach more than 300 basic language concepts that are fundamental to understanding and describing the world in which young children live. Basic concepts are represented in early childhood educational standards across all 50 states, and this article provides the theoretical and practical basis for understanding conceptual domains, subcategories, and the manner in which psychologists and early childhood educators can effectively assess and teach these concepts. © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.