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Hello friends! I’m excited to participate in a book study for the book Word Nerds written by Overturf, Montgomery & Smith. My dear friend, Sabra over at Teaching with a Touch of Twang decided that she wanted to do this book and I jumped at the chance to take a look as well! 🙂 Vocabulary is one of those areas that kids either get, or they don’t. As an only child, I grew up in a household full of adults who liked to read to me and talk to me–ALL THE TIME, so, my vocabulary was well developed at a very early age. When I came into teaching…the idea of teaching vocabulary formally was foreign to me…since most of the time, when vocabulary was presented to me in context I was able to figure out what the word meant. I don’t know about you, but teaching things that come easy to me is HARD. So…I really think that this book will break down some things in a way that will really take my reading instruction to another level! For this particular linky, I’ll be posting a brief summary of my thoughts and an activity or two if I become inspired by the text of the week! 🙂 If you would like to post on this book as well, don’t hesitate to link up with Sabra each Thursday! 🙂
So, this is Ron Burgundy…but…really…it’s also about VOCABULARY! 🙂 Good vocabulary instruction NEEDS to be a big deal in your classroom if your kids are going to take their learning to the next level. I found that the author’s ideas about teaching vocabulary were very ‘Common Core-esque’ when it comes to how we share what we share.
The authors list several different steps to learning vocabulary in the text. They come from a tiered approach–again, very common core! 🙂 One of the things that they mention as ineffective is asking students to look up words in the dictionary and write them out. I thought Dawson’s meme captures the essence of what my third graders looked like when I had them do this! I learned early that sentence writing from the dictionary with third graders was not the most effective way to teach vocabulary.
A second point that the author makes for primary learners which I found key was the idea that in order to really deepen their understanding they mus have scaffolded instruction facilitated by adults because early readers intentionally contain simple words that kids already know. This is why–primary teachers–those read alouds need to be RIGOROUS! 🙂 The authors also highlight the importance of teaching morphology even to kinders! This was such a neat pat on the back for me, because I’d added that component to my morning work packs! So…it’s getting done! 🙂 Woo for me! The chapter had lots of other points in it…I sure hope you pick this book up! It’s really quite a gem and one I’ll turn to often in my teaching this year as I strive to get my mind wrapped around how to break down instruction in this area. The author was so right in that this is one of those areas that is not really taught to teachers, because most people have no idea how to teach it. Phonemic Awareness, Phonics, Fluency…these are all things that are fairly black and white. Vocabulary instruction is contingent on so many factors…many of them outside of the classroom, that it is difficult to tell people an exact ‘fool proof’ way to do teach it. I’m looking forward to reading about how these teachers tackle that challenge in the next chapter.
One of the suggestions for adding rigor to vocabulary instruction while still making it something approachable for the kids was to introduce words that students could use their schema to build on. I whipped up this quick FREEBIE to address vocabulary during my calendar time. We’re going to be using more specific terms to describe the weather and then working on adding those words to our vocabulary throughout the day! I will keep it available during the course of the book study and then add it to my TPT store. So…get it while it’s hot! 🙂
|Click here for the Calendar Time Freebie|