Vocabulary Activities

Vocabulary Activities
Vocabulary Activities
Folse (2008, p. 14) It is important to define what we mean by second language vocabulary. When  we  talk  about  vocabulary,  we usually  mean  words,  but  what  is  a word?  Most  people  think  of  words as  single  units,  such  as  cat,  dozen,  or reluctant. However, these single words are merely one part of the vocabulary load  that  our  students  face.  In  fact, a  “word”  can  be  one  of  five  types, namely  (1) a  single  word,  (2) a  set phrase,  (3) a  variable  phrase,  (4) a phrasal verb, or (5) an idiom.
Marzano 2004 point out the vocabulary activities in six step process teaching academic vocabulary
a)      Provide a description, explanation, or example of the new term. (Include a non-linguistic representation of the term for ESL kids.)
b)      Ask students to restate the description, explanation, or example in their own words. (Allow students whose primary existing knowledge base is still in their native language to write in it.)
c)      Ask students to construct a picture, symbol, or graphic representing the word.
d)     Engage students periodically in activities that help them add to their knowledge of the terms in their notebooks. 
e)      Periodically ask students to discuss the terms with one another. (Allow in native language when appropriate)
f)       Involve students periodically in games that allow them to play with terms.
In additionally nation (2001, p. 5) explained the activities criteria in teaching vocabulary more specific ways at the classroom as follows:
a)      Quickly give the meaning by (a) using an L1 translation, (b) using a known L2 synonym or a simple definition in the L2, (c) showing an object or picture, (d) giving quick demonstration, (e) drawing a simple picture or diagram, (f) breaking the word into parts and giving the meaning of the parts and the whole word (the word part strategy), (g) giving several example sentences with the word in context to show the meaning, (h) commenting on the underlying meaning of the word and other referents.
b)      Draw attention to the form of the word by (a) showing how the spelling of the word is like the spelling of known words, (b) giving the stress pattern of the word and its pronunciation, (c) showing the prefix, stem and suffix that make up the word, (d) getting the learners to repeat the pronunciation of the word, (e) writing the word on the board, (f) pointing out any spelling irregularity in the word.
c)      Draw attention to the use of the word by (a) quickly showing the grammatical pattern the word fits into (countable/uncountable, transitive/intransitive, etc), (b) giving a few similar collocates, (c) mentioning any restrictions on the use of the word (formal, colloquial, impolite, only used in the United States, only used with children, old fashioned, technical, infrequent), (d) giving a well known opposite, or a well known word describing the group or lexical set it fits into.


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