2 3 4 5 6 Displaying 29-35 of 39 Articles

Chunking: Another Perspective

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We recently heard from Visual Thesaurus editor Ben Zimmer about the "chunking" approach to English-language instruction, which focuses on teaching students how stretches of words ("lexical chunks") tend to fall together in high frequency. Brett Reynolds, a professor of academic English at Humber College in Toronto, has long been somewhat skeptical of chunking, and we asked him to offer a contrasting perspective on the value of the approach for language teaching. Continue reading...
Wow! What a response my last column received. Any time The Washington Post excerpts your work, you know you're on to something. My thoughts on teaching vocabulary out of literary context struck a chord with many readers, and I thought it would be beneficial for all if I answered a few questions and shared a few further thoughts this month. Continue reading...
Traditional vocabulary instruction holds that students learn new words best when they learn them in context. Our "Teachers at Work" contributor Shannon Reed made the startling classroom discovery that context isn't always key. Continue reading...
The New York Times is a vocabulary-learning bonanza for students at all levels, employing a larger number of what teachers would call "vocabulary words" than any other American publication. And inside The Times, every day, there's a bonanza within that bonanza, the succinct and telegraphic television listings page, whose capsule movie reviews employ more vocabulary — including words, terms and expressions — than any other page in the paper. And quite enjoyably, too. Continue reading...

Vocabulary At The Center

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We recently spoke to education experts Amy Benjamin and John T. Crow about their new book, Vocabulary at the Center. Amy and John explain the most effective methods for extending the use of new words, so that vocabulary instruction can move beyond rote memorization. Continue reading...

The Pronoun Problem

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It's an age-old quandary: what to do about the lack of a gender-neutral singular third-person pronoun in English? Writing teacher Margaret Hundley Parker tackles this grammatical stumbling block, drawing on her experience in the college classroom — on both sides of the pedagogical divide. Continue reading...

Slang and the Achievement Gap

- 15 comments
Last week, Visual Thesaurus contributor and New York public school teacher Shannon Reed shared some experiences about the richness of student slang that she had encountered. Here is a counterpoint to Shannon's piece, from a new member of the VT sales staff, Elissa Seto. Before joining the VT team Elissa taught science at an urban middle school in the South Bronx. While a fan of slang, Elissa is also concerned about how student reliance on nonstandard speech may be symptomatic of what educators call the achievement gap. Continue reading...
2 3 4 5 6 Displaying 29-35 of 39 Articles

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