Teachers, commemorate Presidents' Day this year by looking through some of the great lists we have to explore the vocabulary choices made by presidents throughout history. These lists can bring your students closer to the words that shape current events or times gone by. Continue reading...
Teachers: How many times does this happen? You pass out copies of an engaging news story, assign your students to read it for homework, and then lead a spirited 10-minute discussion of the article at the beginning of class the next day. If your answer is "Not often enough," you are not alone. Continue reading...
Following a Wall Street Journal article poking gentle fun at a movement to strike overused words such as good, bad, and nice from student writing, Slate Senior Editor Gabriel Roth warned that a "reasonable pedagogical technique" had morphed into "perverse and deadly totalitarianism." For middle school English teachers, we suggest some middle ground. Continue reading...
Teachers: We've just added a built-in assignment tool to make it even easier to assign vocabulary lists for your students to practice. This functionality should come as a welcome addition to teachers--we added it based on your feedback and expect it to be a game changer for anyone teaching word learning using vocabulary.com. Continue reading...
Going into the Vocabulary Bowl last year, no one could have predicted how seriously Obehi Obano would take word learning. A typical eighth grader, Obehi had to work extra hard in math to make the honor roll, and listed among her favorite activities hanging out with her friends, watching "Full House," and going to the beach. But, when it came to vocabulary, "typical" Obehi was not. After she got hooked on the game, she mastered more than 5,000 words during the school year. That's more than 600 words per month, 150 per week, and an impressive 20 per day. Continue reading...
I recently ran across a quote in a "This I Believe" list on Beers' blog supporting the self-selected reading model, and it reminded me to question our collective faith in Lexile and other measures of readability. The resistance to self-selected reading goes hand in hand with the resistance to giving students the power to be in charge of their own vocabulary enrichment. In both cases, the resistance is a result of the faulty assumption that if a teacher is not in charge of the learning, then it must not be taking place. Continue reading...
Social studies teachers: For a current-events mini lesson on the historic Trans-Pacific Partnership Trade Agreement, check out our 10-word Vocabulary List, drawn from five key sentences in the New York Times article announcing the agreement. Continue reading...
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