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Teaching Vocabulary Skills

Updated on November 20, 2009

Teaching Vocabulary

Call me old school, but I really do believe that vocabulary skills are lost on the modern student. It is never too late to expand your vocabulary, whether you are in the second grade, or in the golden years of your life.

In teaching another to expand their vocabulary, you must first begin with age appropriate exercises. For a student of any age, a vocabulary list of ten words per week is appropriate.

Present your student with a list of ten vocabulary words appropriate to their reading level. Include the correct pronunciation, the definition and a sentence correctly using the word.

Assign the student the task of composing one sentence for each new word, underlining the vocabulary word in each sentence.

At the end of the week, test the student by having them number their papers one through ten and read the definition of the words aloud. Have the student record the correct vocabulary word on the paper and grade based on spelling and correct choice of the word.

You may also test the student by providing a previously prepared test. List the vocabulary words on one side of the paper and on the other side provide the definitions of the words. Have the student match the vocabulary word with the correct definition. It is also useful to have the students use the words in a sentence once again during the testing process.

This was the method whereby I learned vocabulary during my primary education at a local Catholic school during the 1960's and I found it to be an effective and efficient way to learn the proper spelling, definition and usage of a broad vocabulary.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.


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