Teaching Academic Vocabulary

Posted by Kristy Beaudry McCain on Jan 22, 2015 7:56:33 AM

thumbVOCABULARY AND THE COMMON CORE STANDARDS

Why learn new vocabulary? Vocabulary makes reading and writing exciting! Words make things come alive. Words help readers to visualize things and create a picture in their mind of what they are reading. Long ago, storytellers told stories and the audience visualized what was happening. Words are powerful.

In addition, vocabulary acquisition is part of the national Common Core Standards. The Common Core Standards provide a consistent and clear understanding of what students are expected to learn in English Language Arts. This helps teachers, parents and guardians know what they need to teach children. The Common Core Vocabulary Standards focus on words and phrases, and their relationships.

Refer to the Common Core website, www.corestandards.org for a complete list of standards for all grade levels K-12.

Common Core English Language Arts Standards

Vocabulary Acquisition and Use

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.5.4 Determine or clarify the meaning of unknown and multiple-meaning words and phrases based on grade 5 reading and content, choosing flexibly from a range of strategies.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.5.4a Use context (e.g., cause/effect relationships and comparisons in text) as a clue to the meaning of a word or phrase.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.5.4b Use common, grade-appropriate Greek and Latin affixes and roots as clues to the meaning of a word (e.g., photograph, photosynthesis).
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.5.4c Consult reference materials (e.g., dictionaries, glossaries, thesauruses), both print and digital, to find the pronunciation and determine or clarify the precise meaning of key words and phrases.

Strategies To Increase Student's Academic Vocabulary

1. Be Aware of Words

Teach students to pay attention to new words. Students can become word detectives. They can use a highlighter or crayon to highlight or circle the word. Show them how to look it up in the dictionary and see what it means. Go to a reference tool (a dictionary, thesaurus, online dictionary, etc.) to find the definition. Then further expand their knowledge by using the word in a sentence or finding the word in a sentence of a book they are reading. Teach them to write the word down in their student notes or on flashcards.

2. Practice…Practice…Practice

Try to practice the word at least five to seven times in the next few days with the child. This helps the brain to remember the word for the long term.

Practice Words By:

• Looking them up in the dictionary

• Finding examples of words in written text

• Using the word in conversation

• Finding the word in a newspaper or magazine. Cut it out and make a collage.

Make a word book and create a new page for each word. Each page should contain:

  • a word
  • the definition
  • an example of how the word is used in written text
  • a synonym for the word
  • a visual representation of the word ( a picture, symbol or graphic)

3. Read a Large Variety of Books

Reading is an important step in increasing vocabulary knowledge. Students should read a wide variety of materials and genres. Reading books online and keeping a log of the books they have read helps to motivate students to read. Students can also add books to their bookshelf for others to see. Big Universe Learning, www.biguniverse.com offers thousands of books online in a variety of genres. Students can even read books from Big Universe Learning on a cell phone as well as a computer or tablet!

4. Use a Dictionary or Reference Tool

Dictionaries are readily available in today’s society. A small portable dictionary is a helpful tool. Online dictionaries are handy and can often be accessed from a cell phone.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.5.4c Consult reference materials (e.g., dictionaries, glossaries, thesauruses), both print and digital, to find the pronunciation and determine or clarify the precise meaning of key words and phrases.

5. Learn Greek and Latin Roots

Expand the child’s vocabulary by teaching Greek and Latin roots. Many words in the English Language are made up of word parts from other languages. called roots. Greek and Latin roots are the most common. A root helps to figure out the meaning of a word. An example of this is judgment.
Root Meaning Example

Jud judge judgment

ECCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.5.4b Use common, grade-appropriate Greek and Latin affixes and roots as clues to the meaning of a word (e.g., photograph, photosynthesis).

6. Study and Review Words Regularly

Review the vocabulary that students have learned. Encourage students to practice the words that they have learned with their classmates, friends and/or family. Try to teach students at least one new vocabulary word per day. Record the word on a calendar so that they can see their progress.

Online Books That Help With Vocabulary Acquisition

nonfiction books

Educators and parents can utilize these helpful teacher's guides to assist with planning. These books offer a great opportunity to enrich student’s vocabulary and content knowledge. Big Universe offers hundreds of titles in many different languages on thousands of topics. Find these informational and engaging texts at www.biguniverse.com

 

 

thumbBuilding Vocabulary Skills and Strategies Level 5

by Joanne Suter (author) © 2010
ISBN: 9781602911246

Here’s a great vocabulary program that is equally appropriate for younger students working at grade level and older students who have “forgotten” or never mastered the basics. The friendly look and tone of this series belies the comprehensive sweep of the instructional sequence. Every topic—from primary level phonics to the specialized terminology of essay tests—is developed “from the ground up.” Includes answer key, 144-pages.

 

thumb-1Lifeskills Vocabulary 1 Reproducible Book with CD

by Saddleback Educational Publishing (author) © 2013
ISBN: 9781612476711

With these workbooks you can teach real life words and skills that students can practice immediately. Furthermore, while teaching about employment forms and money management students are learning essential critical thinking, writing, and reading comprehension skills. Words are learned in context through a variety of high-interest activities including: safety signs and symbols, finding a job, personal health, cooking, smart shopping, legal documents, making a budget, and more. The self-directed activities require virtually no preparation and can be completed in one class period. Topics Include: Safety Signs and Symbols, Finding a Job, Employment Forms and Manuals, Personal Health Care, Government and Law, Media and Communication, and more…

 

freeclipart appleConnecting To The Common Core State Standards

The Common Core State Standards clearly outline what is expected of students at each grade level, for students in the United States. The Common Core State Standards can be found at www.corestandards.org/

The Common Core standards for grades K-5 are clearly outlined below.

Vocabulary Acquisition and Use:

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.5.4
Determine or clarify the meaning of unknown and multiple-meaning words and phrases based on grade 5 reading and content, choosing flexibly from a range of strategies.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.5.4.A
Use context (e.g., cause/effect relationships and comparisons in text) as a clue to the meaning of a word or phrase.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.5.4.B
Use common, grade-appropriate Greek and Latin affixes and roots as clues to the meaning of a word (e.g., photograph, photosynthesis).
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.5.4.C
Consult reference materials (e.g., dictionaries, glossaries, thesauruses), both print and digital, to find the pronunciation and determine or clarify the precise meaning of key words and phrases.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.5.5
Demonstrate understanding of figurative language, word relationships, and nuances in word meanings.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.5.5.A
Interpret figurative language, including similes and metaphors, in context.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.5.5.B
Recognize and explain the meaning of common idioms, adages, and proverbs.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.5.5.C
Use the relationship between particular words (e.g., synonyms, antonyms, homographs) to better understand each of the words.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.5.6
Acquire and use accurately grade-appropriate general academic and domain-specific words and phrases, including those that signal contrast, addition, and other logical relationships (e.g., however, although, nevertheless, similarly, moreover, in addition).

Vocabulary Acquisition and Use:

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.4.4
Determine or clarify the meaning of unknown and multiple-meaning words and phrases based on grade 4 reading and content, choosing flexibly from a range of strategies.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.4.4.A
Use context (e.g., definitions, examples, or restatements in text) as a clue to the meaning of a word or phrase.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.4.4.B
Use common, grade-appropriate Greek and Latin affixes and roots as clues to the meaning of a word (e.g., telegraph, photograph, autograph).
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.4.4.C
Consult reference materials (e.g., dictionaries, glossaries, thesauruses), both print and digital, to find the pronunciation and determine or clarify the precise meaning of key words and phrases.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.4.5
Demonstrate understanding of figurative language, word relationships, and nuances in word meanings.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.4.5.A
Explain the meaning of simple similes and metaphors (e.g., as pretty as a picture) in context.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.4.5.B
Recognize and explain the meaning of common idioms, adages, and proverbs.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.4.5.C
Demonstrate understanding of words by relating them to their opposites (antonyms) and to words with similar but not identical meanings (synonyms).
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.4.6
Acquire and use accurately grade-appropriate general academic and domain-specific words and phrases, including those that signal precise actions, emotions, or states of being (e.g., quizzed, whined, stammered) and that are basic to a particular topic (e.g., wildlife, conservation, and endangered when discussing animal preservation).

Vocabulary Acquisition and Use:

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.3.4
Determine or clarify the meaning of unknown and multiple-meaning word and phrases based on grade 3 reading and content, choosing flexibly from a range of strategies.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.3.4.A
Use sentence-level context as a clue to the meaning of a word or phrase.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.3.4.B
Determine the meaning of the new word formed when a known affix is added to a known word (e.g., agreeable/disagreeable, comfortable/uncomfortable, care/careless, heat/preheat).
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.3.4.C
Use a known root word as a clue to the meaning of an unknown word with the same root (e.g., company, companion).
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.3.4.D
Use glossaries or beginning dictionaries, both print and digital, to determine or clarify the precise meaning of key words and phrases.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.3.5
Demonstrate understanding of figurative language, word relationships and nuances in word meanings.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.3.5.A
Distinguish the literal and nonliteral meanings of words and phrases in context (e.g.,take steps).
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.3.5.B
Identify real-life connections between words and their use (e.g., describe people who are friendly or helpful).
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.3.5.C
Distinguish shades of meaning among related words that describe states of mind or degrees of certainty (e.g., knew, believed, suspected, heard, wondered).
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.3.6
Acquire and use accurately grade-appropriate conversational, general academic, and domain-specific words and phrases, including those that signal spatial and temporal relationships (e.g., After dinner that night we went looking for them).

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