Friday, June 28, 2013

Making Vocabulary Introductions {Word Nerds Book Study}

Chapter 3 of Word Nerds: Teaching All Students to Learn and Love Vocabulary hosted by Sabra at Teaching With a Touch of Twang
 See other posts here: Ch 1, Ch 2, Ch 3, Ch 4, Ch 5, Ch 6, Ch 7

Chapter 3 guides you through the first steps in introducing vocabulary words to your students - sentence prediction, word prediction, trying out the new words, and starting a Vocabulary Journal.

First Steps to Making Vocabulary Introductions

      1. Sentence Prediction
      • Post a cloze sentence for each of the vocabulary words. For example, "There was a _______ of resources after Europeans came to America." 
      • Students use context clues to guess what the words could be. Do not correct their predictions, but praise their efforts and discuss with the class whether or not the words fit.  
      2. Word Prediction
      • Reveal cards one at a time with the vocabulary words written on them.
      • Help students pronounce the word, perhaps using the "My Turn, Your Turn" strategy by saying, "My Turn, CON-FLICT. Your turn..."
      • Repeat but clapping out the syllables.
      • Have the class predict what each word means. Don't reveal the correct answers, but discuss their ideas and talk about any clues in the parts of the words (roots, prefixes, etc...)
      3. Trying Out the Words
      • Try out the vocabulary words one by one in each cloze sentence so students can decide if it fits the context of the sentence.
      • Model using the process of elimination and testing out every word.
      4. Vocabulary Journals
      •  Lead students through completing the first sections of their vocabulary journals - filling in the word and adding the child-friendly definition, picture, and sentence at least 7 words long - a "7-UP" sentence.  :-)   Students can use the sentence from the cloze activity if they're stuck.
          The authors suggest using a pocket chart with sentence strips for the close activity, but I think using my Promethean Board will work better for me. Embedding conversation about the topic throughout the vocabulary introductions is genius - students can't HELP but remember details after so much repeated exposure. :-) And I really love how their enthusiasm for vocabulary really came through in this chapter - treat it almost like a game show with silly sound effects and catch phrases!

          I was also relieved to see the authors using a Frayer-type graphic organizer for the vocabulary journals. I made one very similar a few years ago combining elements from Pickering as well. However.....after looking at it again, it didn't quite fit what I need now. Here is the old "bleh" one:
          Okay, but not great.  Sooo....I hunted down some cute graphics and made a spiffy new Vocabulary Journal!

          Cute, colorful cover and 20 pages of vocabulary graphic organizers - two on each page. Just $1 on TpT or TN.

          And don't forget - you just have a couple more days to enter my Summer Relaxation Giveaway!


          1. Great suggestions. I really want to focus more on vocabulary this year. Thanks.
            Creating Lifelong Learners

            1. Me too, Brandee! This book totally changed my way of thinking.


          2. I really have got to check out this book. Vocabulary journal is super cute!

            The Teaching Thief

            1. Thanks, Amanda! You can download it free from Stenhouse Publishing, too. :-)


          3. Super cute! Could I suggest adding a half sheet for the cover, so vocabulary booklets could be made for each unit? I love this! Thanks!

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