Sunday, May 8, 2016
4 Vocabulary Roadblocks to Avoid
I am a big fan of Anchor Charts. Done the right way, anchor charts are invaluable to your students. Anchor charts can be pre-made but must also allow for editing, if an unsuspected word misunderstanding occurs. Pre-assessing a book for vocabulary roadblocks is a must. Pulling out words you believe will create "comprehension potholes" or "run the story off the road" are a must for a successful Read Aloud. Before reading a book, introduce words to your students out of context. Talk about the meaning. Demonstrate the meaning. Discuss how this particular word might be in this book. You may even want to read the sentence from the story. Preparing for vocabulary can help students spend time on higher order thinking than on the meaning of a single word. One type of anchor chart is the Story Map. Words from the story, both common and new, can be written on post-it notes given to the students before they read the book. Students will predict if the words belong on the map in provided spaces: Characters, Setting, Actions (verbs), Things (nouns) and New to You. If they encounter a word while reading that needs to be moved on the chart...they can easily be moved.
I actually LOVE text gradients. Typically, text gradients are used in the upper elementary but every kindergarten teacher has tried to get her student's to use words more descriptive than small or big. The famous "said is dead" refrain is heard in every first grade class. So, let's talk primary text gradients. A wonderful way "add color" to writing is using paint strips. (I live in fear of paint strips eventually costing money.) The paint strips can be put in library pockets in the writing center and students can take a color strip to make their elephant "enormous" or their ladybug "tiny."
These are just a few ways you can make sure to introduce children to wonderful vocabulary words they can use to write, make connections, and understand.
If you would like a FREEBIE with 2 of the activities, CLICK HERE or the picture below.
I also have Vocabulary Gradients in my TPT store. Click the image, if you are interested.