VocabGal Avatar newsize

Vocabulary tips from our fabulous expert... Sarah!

sponsored by...we believe religion sadlier logo

 

wat_BlogBadge

Subscribe by Email

Your email:

Follow Vocab Gal

Vocab Gal TwitterVocab Gal FacebookPinterest-Vocab-Galgoogle-plus-Vocab-GalYouTube-Vocab-Galrss feed icon

Vocab-Gal-Common-Core-Integration-ELA

Current Articles | RSS Feed RSS Feed

National Poetry Month: Bowdlerize a Poetic Text with Vocabulary Words

 

Poetry-Vocabulary-Activity

In honor of National Poetry Month, I want to highlight the Bowdlerize Your Vocabulary Handout I created last year.

The word bowdlerize comes from the man Thomas Bowdler, who, in the early 1800’s, found Shakespeare’s ribald innuendos so appalling that he published The Family Shakespeare –a censored version of Shakespeare’s plays more appropriate for women and children.  He later did the same with The Rise and Fall of the Roman Empire by Edward Gibbon (“Thomas Bowdler”).  While I disapprove of Bowdler’s actions, I am fascinated by the fact that there is a vocabulary word based on his actions!

With my free handout, students will "bowdlerize" Sonnet 130 by William Shakespeare using their favorite vocabulary words and their own similes.

First, have all students pick their top 5 vocabulary words from the year.  Then, have them think about what makes someone lovely or ugly and write down three similes for pretty and three for ugly. Then give every student a copy of my Bowdlerize Your Vocabulary Handout. Using their similes and their favorite vocabulary words, students will rewrite Shakespeare’s sentiments as their own, then call their work the “_________(last name)-ized” version of the text. 

 

Download the Bowdlerize Your Vocabulary Handout

 

 

 

 

Note: This method can work with any text-fiction or nonfiction, poetry or prose, and kids will definitely buy in because they are personalizing tough texts.  You can appreciate that your students are expressing complex thoughts in new and interesting ways.

 

Common-Core-Standards Common Core State Standards:

Reading Literature/Informational Text Standard 4. Interpret words and phrases as they are used in a text
Reading Literature/Informational Text Standard 5. Analyze the structure of texts
Reading Literature/Informational Text Standard 6. Assess how point of view or purpose shapes a text
Reading Literature/Informational Text Standard 10. Read and comprehend complex literary texts
Language Standard 3. Apply knowledge of language to understand how language functions in different contexts
Language Standard 5. Demonstrate understanding of word relationships and nuances in word meaning

Vocabuary Activity: Vocabulary Comix

I love reading comic strips; I especially love comic strips that include vocabulary words.  I have cut out and posted several around my room, and sometimes my students will bring them in for me.

However, instead of just waiting for comic strips to appear, I have started asking my students to make their own.  There are many ways for students to create their own comic strips.  I have blanked out the speech bubbles in Sunday comics and have had students use free online sites like storyboardthat.com or makebeliefscomix.com to have students create both the images and the content.

However, I’m excited to present an even easier way to have students create comics.  I have created a few templates here for you that students can make their own.

 

Vocabulary-Comix

  Vocabulary Comix Handout

 

 

 

Common-Core-Vocab-Gal Common Core State Standards:
Reading Literature/Informational Text Standard 2. Determine themes of text
Writing Standard 4. Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate
Writing Standard 4. Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate
Language Standard 4. Determine or clarify the meaning of unknown words
Language Standard 5. Demonstrate understanding of word relationships and nuances in word meaning.
Language Standard 6. Acquire and use accurately a range of general academic and domain-specific words and phrases; demonstrate independence in gathering vocabulary knowledge 

 

 

Related posts:

Memory
Create a Car
Business Cards

Vocabulary Game: You’re on a Roll

Students love to play games and be social.  Playing with dice gives students an opportunity to practice their vocabulary in an enjoyable way.  The dice mandates I’ve created can be modified or combined if you have more than one dice per group (renumber 1-12 rather than just 1-6).  I’d also love other mandates that you have given your students depending on the number rolled.

Vocabulary-Game 

Here are the two different ways to play:

Option 1: Divide the class into groups of 3-5 (depending on how many dice you have).  Give each group a list of vocabulary words.  Have the first student in the group roll the dice and then use the first word in the list in his/her answer. The next student in the group rolls and also uses the first word in the list in his/her answer. Once all group members have used the first word, students can move on to the second word.  Once all students have used the second word, move on to the third, etc.  Suggested time limit per student answer: 30 seconds to 1 minute.

Option 2: Divide the class into groups of 3-5 (depending on how many dice you have).  Give each group a list of vocabulary words.  Have the first student in the group roll the dice and then use the first word in the list in his/her answer.  The next student in the group rolls and uses the second word in the list in his her answer.  This continues until all the words on the list are used. Suggested time limit per student answer: 30 seconds to 1 minute.

 

Notes:  You could make a variety of word lists and then have groups switch lists when they finish a round.

If students are uncomfortable playing in a group, feel free to have them roll on their own and write down their responses.

 

Download the You're on a Roll vocabulary game!

 

 

 

Speaking & Listening Standard 1. Prepare for and participate effectively in a range of conversations and collaborations
Language Standard 4. Determine or clarify the meaning of unknown words
Language Standard 6. Acquire and use accurately a range of general academic and domain-specific words and phrases; demonstrate independence in gathering vocabulary knowledge

Top 5 Tips for Preparing for Vocabulary Aspects of the SAT

The College Board announced that the SAT is changing to better address the Common Core Standards as well as become more transparent and more egalitarian-I am excited! 

What I’m even more excited about is that the emphasis on vocabulary will not change.  Clearly, I love words –as do all of you I suspect!  However, the evidence is clear that students with a strong vocabulary are great readers, writers and thinkers-the backbone of 21st century skills.

How do we as teachers continue to prepare students for the current SAT (as well as the new test coming out in 2016?).

Check out my tip sheet for help.

SAT-Vocabulary 

  5 Tips for Preparing for Vocabulary Aspects of the SAT

 

 

 

Common-Core-ELA Common Core State Standards:

Language Standard 3. Apply knowledge of language to understand how language functions in different contexts.
Language Standard 4. Determine or clarify the meaning of unknown words
Language Standard 5. Demonstrate understanding of word relationships and nuances in word meaning.
Language Standard 6. Acquire and use accurately a range of general academic and domain-specific words and phrases; demonstrate independence in gathering vocabulary knowledge 

 

Related Posts:

Test Taking Strategies
Stars and Stickers
Got Words Handout

Test Prep and Review Strategies for Students

‘Tis the season for Common Core assessments, and I know that testing causes anxiety for most of us. I want to lessen your burden by giving you a simple checklist that my academic coach friend Brandi Hutson and I developed to help ensure that your students do well on any assessment they take, whether it be a basic vocabulary assessment or a major Common Core State Standards assessment.

 

Checklist for Test Prep

  • Students understand the format of test questions.

  • Students have strategies for answering each test question format (see download).

  • Students know the learning targets that will be covered on the test.

  • Students recognize the learning targets they have mastered.

  • Students realize the learning targets they still need to review.

  • Students have additional opportunities for review, especially for learning targets they still need to master (see additional review opportunities below).

  • Students have tools, and know how to use them, to help them study (such as flashcards, online quizzes, reviewing feedback on previous quizzes/tests, etc). 

 

Test-Strategies

 

In addition to my checklist, I've created three handouts that can assist your students in test prep. The first handout with sheep on it is basic strategies for all students grades 2-12+ when answering multiple choice questions on prose passages.

The second handout is for high school students, especially honors level students, when asked to answer ACT, SAT, and AP questions over reading passages.  These are the strategies I tell my own high school students as we prepare for our AP Lit test in the spring.

The third handout is an awesome flashcard template students can use to help them study. Happy testing!

 

Download Your Test Prep Student Handouts!

 

 

 

Additional Review Opportunites*

*These can all be modified if you have content other than vocabulary to review.

Oranges to Oranges
Think Tac Toe
Vocab Playlist
Rap your Words
Toss the Vocabulary
Memory with Words 
Banned Words
Vocab-Categories 

 

See also

Can I get a Quick Review?
Surviving to the End 

 

 

Vocabulary Activity: Vocabulary Think-Tac-Toe

Vocabulary-ActivityHello everyone,

Today I’d like to share a great vocabulary activity entitled the Vocabulary Think-Tac-Toe.  This vocabulary game gives students options in regards to their own vocabulary instruction. 

I like to use Vocabulary Think-Tac-Toe when it comes time to review a few units, since students are putting in some serious time to complete three of these activities.  However, you can certainly make it a one-unit assignment and just lessen the number of words you ask students to include for each activity.  I left blanks for you to fill in regarding how many words per assignment so that the vocabulary activity can be modified to better fit your needs.

Think-Tac-Toe boards are great for all kinds of activities, and can certainly be modified to include activities that reinforce other aspects of your classroom studies or to differentiate for students who need to develop or extend their learning in regards to vocabulary instruction.

Download my Vocabulary Think-Tac-Toe chart for your classroom!

 

Download the Vocabulary Think\u002DTac\u002DToe handout!

 

 

 

Common-Core-ELA Common Core State Standards:
Writing Standard 3. Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events
Writing Standard 10. Write routinely over extended time frames and shorter time frames for a range of tasks, purposes, and audiences.
­Speaking & Listening Standard 4. Present information, findings, and supporting evidence such that listeners can follow
Language Standard 3. Apply knowledge of language to understand how language functions in different contexts.
Language Standard 4. Determine or clarify the meaning of unknown words
Language Standard 5. Demonstrate understanding of word relationships and nuances in word meaning.
Language Standard 6. Acquire and use accurately a range of general academic and domain-specific words and phrases; demonstrate independence in gathering vocabulary knowledge 

 

Related Posts:

Color Your Vocabulary
Rap Vocabulary Words
Memory with Vocabulary Words

Vocabulary Games: Row Races with Vocabulary Words

 

Vocabulary-Game

Back in November I held a contest for teachers attending NCTE. Teachers submitted their favorite vocabulary activity for an opportunity to dine with me at the University Club, sample Vocabulary Workshop books, and have their ideas featured on the blog.

Today I'm excited to share one of our winning entries. Francene G. created the Row Races vocabulary game to encourage students to use their vocabulary and creative writing skills. Divided into teams of four, students will create a cohesive story using vocabulary words listed on the board. Sitting in their "row" students will pass the Row Races with Vocabulary Words handout from teammate to teammate until the story is complete. The first row to finish wins!

Get the detailed instruction sheet and reproducible handout for your classroom.

 

Get the Row Races with Vocabulary Words instruction sheet and reproducible handout!

 

 

 

Common-Core-ELA  Common Core State Standards:
Language Standard 3. Apply knowledge of language to understand how language functions in different contexts.
Language Standard 4. Determine or clarify the meaning of unknown words
Language Standard 5. Demonstrate understanding of word relationships and nuances in word meaning.
Language Standard 6. Acquire and use accurately a range of general academic and domain-specific words and phrases; demonstrate independence in gathering vocabulary knowledge

 

Big thanks to Francene for sharing this exciting vocabulary activity!

Teaching Vocabulary with Prezi

 

Prezi-Vocabulary-ActiviyOne of my favorite vocabulary activities from 2013 was Present Vocab with Prezi. I quickly learned that adding edtech to vocabulary instruction captured the attentions of even my most reluctant students. With this vocabulary activity, students will create their own Prezi presentation that highlights two vocabulary words that have more than one definition (as most do). Within their presentation students will highlight parts of speech, visual metaphors, definitions and more! I encourage you to check out my online Prezi and download the simple assignment sheet and rubric I created. This fun and visual vocabulary activity will have both you and your students excited –and isn’t that what we want for all assignments?

 

Download the Vocabulary Prezi handout \u0026amp\u003B rubric!

 

 

 

 

Common-Core-ELA Common Core State Standards

Speaking & Listening Standard 4. Present information, findings, and supporting evidence such that listeners can follow
Speaking & Listening Standard 5. Make strategic use of digital media and visual displays of data
Language Standard 3. Apply knowledge of language to understand how language functions in different contexts.
Language Standard 4. Determine or clarify the meaning of unknown words
Language Standard 5. Demonstrate understanding of word relationships and nuances in word meaning.
Language Standard 6. Acquire and use accurately a range of general academic and domain-specific words and phrases; demonstrate independence in gathering vocabulary knowledge


Vocabulary Activities: Going for Vocabulary Gold

Vocabulary-OlympicsThe Olympics are such a wonderful cause for celebration and such a great inspiration for vocabulary instruction! 

First, I have an awesome coloring page highlighting the featured winter sports in Russia.  Students get to color the page, but only after they label the Olympians with fun phrases that include vocabulary words. 

Second, I have an Olympic medal podium design on which students can draw.  I feel like all the athletes have great moments competing, and they all deserve to win.  Yet there are only three winners…and in this case, only three instances from throughout the games can be the winners.

Have your students rank their favorite moments from the ice-skating to the curling- and draw their top three events on the platforms as gold, silver and bronze medal winners.

Students who have not seen the Olympics can make up favorite moments like a death-defying ice-skating pirouette or a miraculous bobsledding team win.

Regardless if the moment is real or imagined, have students describe why each is a winning example underneath each podium stand using their vocabulary.

First students color Olympians in action, and then they draw their favorite moments from the games. Have some fun making the Olympics come alive in your classroom!

 

Download Your Olympic Vocabulary Activities!

 

 

 

Common-Core-ELA  Common Core State Standards:
Language Standard 3. Apply knowledge of language to understand how language functions in different contexts.
Language Standard 4. Determine or clarify the meaning of unknown words
Language Standard 5. Demonstrate understanding of word relationships and nuances in word meaning.
Language Standard 6. Acquire and use accurately a range of general academic and domain-specific words and phrases; demonstrate independence in gathering vocabulary knowledge

 

Related Links:

Create a Car
Menu for the Perfect Meal
Opening Ceremonies

Vocabulary Activity: Olympic Games Opening Ceremony

Are you and your students excited for the Olympics-especially to watch from the comfort of a warm room?  I have already been looking at all the images of the Olympic torch being passed from what looks like one frigidly beautiful spot to another, and I am glad that I do not have to stay outside for long periods of time this winter.

As we countdown to my favorite part of the Olympic games, the opening ceremonies, I thought it would be awesome to have my students consider and describe imagined Opening Ceremonies for their very own nations, complete with customized torches.  For inspiration, you can have your students watch the upcoming XXII Olympic Games Opening Ceremony or show a clip of an older Olympic ceremonies (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uhr49NeN-_4) and then have students create their own.

 Vocabulary-Activity

  1. Using the Brainstorm Sheet, have students brainstorm characteristics of their own nations, such as favorite animals, colors, national pastimes, clothing attire, music, modes of transportation, etc.

  2. At the top of the Opening Ceremony Sheet, ask students to consider what they’ve determined about their nations then use that information to design and describe a torch to use during the Opening Ceremony.

  3. Finally, have them think about how their nations would host an Olympic Games Opening Ceremony to showcase these characteristics. They can describe a part of the Opening Ceremony or outline the entire event.

Feel free to be as silly or spectacular as you want, just make sure to use at least 10 vocabulary words in your description.

Extensions or alternatives: Have students describe the actual opening ceremonies from Sochi, or draw a picture of a moment of their opening ceremonies and label it with vocabulary words.

 

Download the Free Virtual Museum Travel activity!  

 

Common-Core-ELA  Common Core State Standards:

Language Standard 3. Apply knowledge of language to understand how language functions in different contexts.
Language Standard 4. Determine or clarify the meaning of unknown words
Language Standard 5. Demonstrate understanding of word relationships and nuances in word meaning.
Language Standard 6. Acquire and use accurately a range of general academic and domain-specific words and phrases; demonstrate independence in gathering vocabulary knowledge 


 

All Posts