I think we can all agree that teaching vocabulary is important. We knew it before all of the educational brain research became popular, and it's just confirmed what we teachers always thought. Marzano says it's crucial, and Hattie says vocabulary programs have an effect size of 0.67.
With that in mind we spent a lot of time this past year focusing on vocabulary this year. It really improved unit test scores this year.
How did we focus on vocabulary? Games! After introducing and explicitly teaching the vocabulary words we played many games with words. I placed time specifically in the lessons to play the games, and if there was extra time we would get the games back out again to play.
The good news is that students LOVE playing games and it made learning and understanding vocabulary a lot of fun. What are the games we played?
Memory is the first game we play. The students match the words and definitions. The students that need it can have their vocabulary charts with them.
Vocabo is a great game were students make connections between the vocabulary words. As they play they need to show the connection between the vocabulary words. The first one done yells "Vocabo" (like Uno!).
The last game we play is Go Fish! Not only do the students need to make connections, but it becomes even harder because they need to connect the words, definitions, and pictures to make a match.
Want to play these games in your classroom? Sign up for my newsletter or go HERE to Teachers Pay Teachers to get a free copy of the directions.
Need vocabulary cards for your games? Find them HERE!
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