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Chapter 31

Expanding vocabulary across instructional contexts (Page # 524-525)

- English is a combined language that is continuously expanding with new words.
- Encourage curiosity about vocabulary: we learn new words every day and we should develop a
habit of noticing new words, and be curious about them.
- Simply seeing a word once and hypothesizing its meaning competently enough to understand a
text is not enough. Reading, interpreting, and using it many times is the most effective way to
acquire new vocabulary.
Systems for learning new words
- Phonics to take the word apart and notice its components.
- Phonics to pronounce the word.
- Language syntax to notice the place and function of the word in the sentence.
- Word structure to notice endings and the way they mark the function of the word in the sentence.
- Meaning of the entire sentence to hypothesize meaning of individual words.
- Word connections to notice the roots of word.
Comprehension of text: the strategic word solver accesses many sources of information all at once,
which is what proficient readers do and it is almost automatic and unconscious.
Creating Competent Acquirers of Vocabulary (Page #s: 525-527)
The ULTIMATE goal of teaching vocabulary is creating competent word learners!!!
Competent vocabulary acquirers:
- Learn new words by encountering in context during reading or conversation
- Connect new words with those they already know
- Use word parts and their functions to identify new words
- Recognize synonyms/antonyms
- Recognize when words have multiple meanings
- Use dictionaries and other resources to determine meaning/pronunciations of words
- Understands figurative uses of words (similes/metaphors)
- Recognize connotation and denotation of new words
- Use context clues and knowledge of language to understand new words
- Use new words in talking and writing
Receptive Vocabulary words we understand when heard or read
Productive Vocabulary words we use to communicate as a speaker/writer

Shades of Knowing a Word:

-A word you truly know you can read it, pronounce it, write it, and understand/use in many contexts.
-Literacy rests on foundation of oral language knowledge

Role of Vocabulary in Comprehension (Pg. 527)
Vocabulary levels are interlinked with reading comprehension levels, teachers can use this as another
way to predict reading comprehension levels of students. Early intervention is key!
Vocabulary provides/requires
- Prediction of reading comprehension levels
- Depth/symbolic meaning of text
- Narrows gap between high & low socioeconomic groups
- Continue throughout schooling
- high socioeconomic 1
graders known 2x more words as low socioeconomic students
- vocab limitations = achievement gaps
Research on Vocabulary Instruction (Pg. 527-528)
Traditional Vocab Instruction includes
- writing definition
- matching words/definitions
- matching word/synonyms
Definition Study Instruction (Probs per Nagy)
- learning/memorizing definitions = superficial/temporary understanding
- definitions not always in line with context of text
- narrow understanding (comprehension reqs in depth/rich knowledge)
Context Study Instruction (Probs per Nagy)
nds fully
in many
Knows one
or two
and apply
in some
Knows one
word in
but cannot
use it
y with
Has an
idea to
of word
g the





- lacks substantial info to understand full/precise meaning
- Context alone will not create a well-rounded understanding of vocab

- Rich definitions
- Lots of examples
- Illustrations/Visual Aids
- Opportunities to make connections w/own experience
Avoid random/incidental vocab knowledge by teaching b4, during & after reading strategies
Readers need..
- Strategies to gather vocab meaning from context
- identify when they dont understand
- understand how to search for meaning
- specific understanding of specific vocab
Concept aid to plan Vocab instruction
Tier 1 - simple/basic vocab w/little to no instruction (ex. summer, family, hungry)
Tier 2 common vocab; connection w/root words & affixes (ex. unfortunate, enthralled)
Tier 3 specialized vocab, scientific domain; not common; learned thru content study

HOW Vocab is LEARNED: Teach by indirect, then direct lessons, by making connections during
Interactive Read Alouds/Guided Reading/Literature Instruction/Independent Reading/Intentional
Conversations & prompting w/Ask Open-ended ?s to open opportunities for individual
thinking/connections thru experience
Specific Vocabulary Lessons & Integrated Instruction Page 529
- Vocabulary needs to be highly interactive and based on your students needs and experiences.
- Vocabulary learning should be strategic and accelerative rather than pure memorization.
- Strategic action would be explicit vocabulary lessons with categories such as sorting activities and
word listing.
- Early concept words: colors, numbers, days of the week, months of the year, and seasons.
- Labels: familiar words we use every day like family words, neighborhood words, food words, and
animal words.
- Synonyms: words that mean the same or almost the same
o create charts for resources, pg. 531
- Antonyms: words that have opposite meanings
o helps students identify contrasting pairs, pg. 532
- Nouns: words that represent a person, place, or thing. May include abstract objects such as hope
- Verbs: action words that tell what a noun or pronoun does
o includes active/ passive verbs, and nouns that become verbs
- Adjectives/ Adverbs: modify nouns and verbs, called describing words, pg. 533
- Homophones: words that sound the same, but look different, pg. 533/ fig. 31-7
o use sentences to develop contextual meaning
- Homographs: words that look the same but have different contextual meanings (ex: read, lead, pg.
534/ fig. 31-8)
- Compound Words- combination of two smaller words, pg. 534/ fig. 31-9
- Figurative Use of Words
o writers use figurative language to create sensory images
o simile comparison using like or as
o metaphor comparison without using like or as
- Blended Words: words created by combining existing words, pg. 535/ fig. 31-11
- Onomatopoetic Words: words that mimic sounds, pg. 535/ fig. 31-12
- Content Words- words that describe a bigger concept
hot cold wet
rain wind snow
weather cloud sun
heat drizzle sleet

What to Teach in Vocabulary Instruction pages 536-542
Words with Multiple Meaning
- Students need to know two or more meanings for the words you highlight from ORAL LANGUAGE /
- Meant for students to grasp the context of which meaning of the word to use when
Multi Syllable Tier-Two Words
- These words appear frequently in different texts useful to students
- Identify tier 2 words in texts the students are reading and in words that they already understand
the concept of
o example: reality is a word students can access by understanding the word real
o example: detest is a word for an idea students may understand as hate or dislike
o Understanding these words allows students to describe the concept of them with precision
Technical or Scientific Words (Tier-Three Words)
- Not useful in building vocabulary
- Prompt students to use resources (glossary) to identify the meaning/concept of these words
o example: transpiration, enzyme
- Studying Greek & Latin roots will give students better access to these types of words
- Definition: single words/phrases that have taken on meanings peculiar to themselves
- Teaching students how to identify idioms is essential in that they will be able to read through
them without comprehending the phrase in a literal sense and it will add variety to their writing
Words from Many Languages
- Grasp general concept of the origin of words
o example: food names tacos, spaghetti
Words from Names
- Grasp concepts of getting words from names
o example: sandwich English Earl of Sandwich
Words from Initials
- Acronyms created from the first letters of a compound term
Clipped Words and Abbreviations
- Shortened forms of longer words (clipped words)
o example clipped word automobile
o example abbreviation Mr. St.
- Word that reads the same forward/backward
- NOT an essential area of vocabulary
- Increase students enjoyment and interests in words
o example: madam
Greek and Latin Roots of Words
- Helps understand multi-syllable words
o example: root urb = means cityurban, suburban
Planning Interactive Vocabulary Lessons page 537
- Use multiple approaches to explicitly teach vocabulary to keep students interested
Word Webs
- Make a schematic diagram of alternative word choices for a specific word
Word Analogies
- Words that relate in some way
o example: happy is to sad, as big is to little
Word Substitution
- Help students think of synonyms of nouns, verbs, adjectives or adverbs in the sentence
- Change one or two words and ask the students to discuss any changes in meaning (large or subtle)
Words in Context
- How context affects the meaning of words
o example: think about the differences between running down the street and a runny nose
or running for an election
- Connotations can also be used to show how words have changed over the years and could mean
something different in the present than it did in the past
- example: foxes are sly sly means clever, but also sneaky
Word Sorting
- Helps students form hypotheses about the properties of written words through demonstration
- Categories for sorting can be open students create their own, or closed categories are
Semantic Mapping (figures 31-12 and 31-15 on page 538)
- Use prior knowledge to connect to the text
o example: figure 31-15 they discovered that the writer was using many concepts related to
music as symbols for love and courage
Semantic Feature Analysis (figure 31-16 on page 539)
- Semantic Feature Analysis is a step further than Semantic Mapping
o It deals most explicitly with relationships among word meaning
- Use Semantic Mapping to connect and compare words (ex: figure 31-17 pg. 340 connect and
compare words)
- Start with high-level concept feelings then move to subcategories (ex: figure 31-18 pg 340)
Linear Relationships
- Instructive to organize words (ex: figure 31-19 on pg 340; feeling in increments from very
negative to very positive)
Stressing the Importance of Concepts (page 539)
- Students must understand the concepts that words represent
- Readers need to understand that words and their meanings have subtle differences which can be
explained through meaningful reading and writing experiences
o example: predator and hunter
Integrate Vocabulary Instruction
- Integrate vocabulary instruction into all reading and writing experiences
- Younger children need to understand the meaning of words when they hear stories and engage in
shared reading
Interactive Read-Aloud and Literature Discussion
- Essential for word learning
- Read aloud and discussion is critically important to expand vocabulary in elementary school
o pause and explain
o go back over tricky words
o make connections to prior knowledge
o use follow up activities (listed in chapter 30)
Shared Reading
- Students become familiar with sophisticated text due to support from teacher
- Provide explicit explanation model allow students to apply
o example: figure 31-21 on page 542
- Substitute synonyms/antonyms
o example: little tiny, quiet/noisy
- Highlight word and revisit to elaborate
o example: highlight a word while reading to draw attention to the word, then discuss
Guided Reading (more suggestions on page 541)
- Explain new words during introduction of the text
- Help students connect new words to concepts they already know
- Have students keep lists of new words in their readers notebook
- Show how to monitor if they understand or do not understand the word
Independent Reading (more suggestions on page 541)
- Provide a large variety of texts
- Mini lesson draw attention to interesting words, encourage them to share new words
- Conferences- evaluate students understanding of words in texts. Explain and discuss word
meaning and help build enthusiasm for noticing and thinking about the meaning of the words
- Encourage students to use new words as they write about their reading in their readers notebook.
Word Study Lessons (more suggestions on page 541)
- Boost students vocabulary
- Teach students to make connections among words in multiple ways
o Word parts
o Word function (noun, verb, adjective and adverb)
o Word Structure (words ending in ed and ing)
o Affixes
o Sounds
o Meaning
o Compound words
o Games (concentration, lotto, word searches)
- Teach students to make connections between words by meaning in multiple ways Have students
connect words, such as their spelling words, with words that
o Mean the same
o Are the opposites
o Same categories
o Same word roots
Writing Workshop (more suggestions on page 541)
- These help students express their own thinking through writing
- Acknowledge when students use words from their texts and minilessons
- Encourage students to use a wider range of vocabulary when doing their own writing
- Create charts during minilessons that help students make connections to words they would want
to use in their writing.
- Encourage and assist students in replacing synonyms that reflect a more precise meaning of what
they mean
Evidence of Vocabulary Learning
We would like to see our students learn 400 new words per year and the following are questions we
want to have in mind with our students. Do they:
- Show interests in words
- Notice and comment on new words that they have discovered
- Actively search for meaning when they see a new word
- Demonstrate strategies for solving new words
- Use new words in discussion or in their writing