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Words are like chameleons. Just like a chameleon changes color to adapt to its environment, a word sometimes has to change forms to adapt to its context in a sentence. This might seem like a silly analogy, but if you have ever tried to teach students new words and how to use those words in original sentences, this silly analogy might benefit you (and your students).  Continue reading...

For Black History Month, take a look at some of the speeches that have inspired progress towards racial equality in America. Beyond looking at the historical context of each speech, students can use VocabGrabber to analyze the linguistic patterns in a particular speech to gain insight into what rhetorical devices made those spoken words so memorable.  Continue reading...

Can you imagine trying to explain the word currency without using the words money, exchange or country? Or, how about trying to explain epic without referring to the words hero, narrative or poem? This activity, borrowed from Hasbro's Taboo game, is a great way to have students review a list of vocabulary words from class in a fun, engaging format.  Continue reading...

According to educator and writer Ruth Culham "precise nouns, descriptive adjectives, and energetic verbs" are all examples of the rich language we should be encouraging students to develop as teachers emphasize "word choice" as one of the "6 + 1 traits of writing."  Continue reading...

Ed researcher Robert J. Marzano suggests that we can help close the achievement gap by explicitly teaching subject-specific academic vocabulary to those students who are lacking the background knowledge to succeed in school. We urge you to check out this handy-dandy chart that demonstrates how the Visual Thesaurus can help you implement Marzano's six steps of vocabulary instruction.  Continue reading...

In Bob Greenman's "Teachers at Work" column about the value of having students appreciate and create similes, he astutely points out that while writers should avoid using a simile that is a cliche ("smart as a whip," etc.), they should also establish "a comparison with something almost any reader can picture or identify with."  Continue reading...

Teachers, looking to get students out of their seats and learning some new words? Try introducing pantomime as a vocabulary-enriching activity. As Beck, McKeown and Kucan point out in Creating Robust Vocabulary, "physically responding to words can promote connections to new word meanings."  Continue reading...

3 4 5 6 7 Displaying 36-42 of 46 Articles