Varying factors that affect or contribute to
Old English-450 to 1100 AD
Middle English-1100 to 1500
Modern English-1500 to present
Children begin kindergarten with
approximately 5000 words in their
vocabularies and their vocabularies grow at a
rate of about 3000 words in a year.
Through varied learning experiences, student
vocabulary will increase.
A root word is a morpheme; the basic part of
a word to which affixes are added to words
are developed from a single root word.
Affixes are bound morphemes that are added
to words and root words. Affixes can be
prefixes or suffixes.
Antonyms and synonyms:
Synonyms are words that have the same or
nearly the same meaning.
Antonyms are words that express opposite
Teach students how to use dictionaries and
thesauri to find the meanings of words.
The T chart is an excellent activity for
Homonyms are words that have sound and
Homophones are words that sound alike but
are spelled differently.
Homographs are words that are spelled the
same but pronounced differently. Examples
include: bow, close, lead, minute, record,
read and wind.
Example: shout-yell, a liquid for laundry or
dance in a Pentecostal church
Many words have more than one meaning. For
example, the word bank:
Students can create posters with word clusters to
show multiple meanings of words Words also
assume additional meanings when an affix is
added or when it is combined with another word.
Students can use context clues to determine the
meaning of words:
Many words have both literal and figurative
meanings. Literal meanings are the explicit,
Figurative meanings are metaphorical or use
figures of speech.
Idioms are groups of words such as: spill the
beans that have a specific meanings.
Many words are borrowed from Native
Americans and many countries from around
African: banjo, cola, gumbo, safari, zombie
Greek: atom, cyclone, hydrogen
Italian: broccoli, carnival, macaroni, opera,
Turkish: caviar, yogurt
Japanese: kimono, judo, origami
A continuum of word knowledge:
No knowledge-students are not familiar with
Incidental knowledge-students have seen
the word but they do not know its meaning.
Partial knowledge-students know one
definition for the word.
Full knowledge-students have a deep
understanding of the word’s meanings and
they can use it effectively in multiple
When you choose words to teach, always
select the most useful words.
There are 3 tiers of words: tier 1-basic, tier
2-useful words in school and tier 3-less
common words that not all students need to
learn before high school.
Word walls should be interactive. Most
teachers choose the most important words
from the text.
This is the most important way to focus
students’ attention on words.
Dramatizing words (ESL Video- “I found it.”)
Books about words
Semantic feature analysis
Teachers assess students’ word knowledge in
a variety of ways. They listen while students
talk or examine various work samples.
Other strategies include: 1) check reading
logs, 2) listen for new vocabulary words when
students give reports, 3) ask students to draw
a word map, 4) check students’ reports,
poems, stories, and projects, and 5) ask
students to write a letter telling you what they