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There is a “scorecard” to fill in, usually by the girls, as well as questions to stimulate conversation.Then at the end, they choose who they liked the most and why.Ask students to walk around the room and take some notes regarding which words they think pair best with which objects or pictures. This one is always engaging and enjoyable – not to mention memorable.This activity works really well as a review of multiple vocabulary units as long as too many words are not included. It’s the most beneficial as far as retaining word meanings to assign each pair of students one word.However, it’s essential that we are taking these skills one step further so that our students understand the essential values these skills have.We build a strong reading community in my classroom and my students are constantly reading what they are motivated and interested in reading.
If you want your students to learn words for the purpose of remembering them and actually using them in reading and writing, you need to make sure they engage with their vocabulary in unique and meaningful ways.If you read my first post about brain-based vocabulary in the secondary classroom and are on a quest for more vocabulary activities to add to your teaching arsenal, I’ve got them. I like using continuums because they help students reflect on their understanding of the word, and they also give me a valuable quick check for understanding.Some of my favorite ways to use continuums are to ask questions like these: Gallery activities can work a couple different ways, but I love how they encourage students to think about new words creatively.We even sang the wheels on the bus to transition to the next group and I would yell “beep beep! You might think it sounds corny but my 6th graders were SO into it. A simple authentic experience where students recognize that what we’re learning in class is happening inside of their books.If you sell it with enthusiasm, amazing things can happen! If I’ve prepared my students enough, they’ll recognize and be able to interpret the figurative language in the text. Trusting my own teaching abilities and trusting the abilities of my students.