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Vocabulary

Frayer, D. (1969). Frayer Model. Retrieved November 19, 2014, from West
Virginia Department of Education:
http://wvde.state.wv.us/strategybank/FrayerModel.html
Frayer Model
Step By Step:
1. Explain the Frayer model graphical organizer to the class. Use a common word to
demonstrate the various components of the form. Model the type and quality of
desired answers when giving this example.
2. Select a list of key concepts from a reading selection. Write this list on the board and
review it with the class before students read the selection.
3. Divide the class into student pairs. Assign each pair one of the key concepts and have
them read the selection carefully to define this concept. Have these groups complete
the four-square organizer for this concept.
4. Ask the student pairs to share their conclusions with the entire class. Use these
presentations to review the entire list of key concepts.
Strengths: The Frayer Model strategy promotes critical thinking by the students and helps them
better understand words that are unfamiliar to them.
Weaknesses: Some students may actually know the word but forget that they do know the word,
or what the word means. However, this strategy is designed to help students remember and better
understand the words and their meanings.
Example:

Moore, D.W., & Moore, S.A. (1986). Possible sentences. Reading in the content areas:
Improving classroom instruction. Dubuque, IA: Kendall/Hunt.
Possible Sentences
Step By Step:
1. Create a list of 10 vocabulary words related to the topic being covered. Words should
be familiar and unfamiliar.
2. Create 5 sentences, using two words per sentence.
3. Teach the topic that the words relate to. Then have students go back and evaluate how
they used the words. For the correct use of the word put a (+) sign and words
incorrect put a (-) sign. For words that student are not sure of put a (?) sign.
4. Student should correct the incorrect sentences and used resources to find out if the
other words are correct or not.
Strengths: Students can go back and correct the mistakes that they made in their sentences. This
helps reinforce the correct way to use the words in a sentence.
Weaknesses: Some students may get discouraged if they get a sentence incorrect and give up on
the lesson.
Example:
Topic: ____________________
Words: ________________, _________________, _________________,
_________________, _________________, _________________,
_________________, _________________, _________________,
_________________,
Sentences:
1. __________________________________
__________________________________
2. __________________________________
__________________________________
3. __________________________________
__________________________________
4. __________________________________
__________________________________
5. __________________________________
__________________________________

Bean, T. W., Readence, J. E., & Baldwin, R. S. (2011). Content area literacy: An integrated
approach. United States: Kendall Hunt Publishing Company.
Visual/Verbal Word Association
Step By Step:
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.

Give the students a list of words
Have the students divide a sheet of paper into 4 sections
In the top left corner, have the student write the vocabulary word
In the bottom left corner, have the student write the definition
In the top right corner, have the student draw a picture or an example of the word
In the bottom right corner, have the student write a personal association with the word

Strengths: This strategy helps students make a connection with something they know to help
them remember the vocabulary word.
Weaknesses: This would be a difficult strategy to use if the student did not have any prior
knowledge of the vocabulary word.
Example:

Vocabulary Term

Visual Representation

Definition

Personal Association

Bean, T. W., Readence, J. E., & Baldwin, R. S. (2011). Content area literacy: An integrated
approach. United States: Kendall Hunt Publishing Company.
Word Maps
Step By Step:
1. Review or introduce a vocabulary word to the students.
2. Have the students write the word and then create the word map using other words that
they associate with the word.
3. Have students create labels that describe how they grouped the words.
Strengths: This strategy allows students to associate the word with other words that they know so
that they are better able to remember it.
Weaknesses: This strategy requires some prior knowledge and students could struggle if they do
not know any words to associate with the given word.
Example:

English Language Learners
Vogt, J.E. (2008). 99 Ideas and activities for teaching English learners with the SIOP model.
Boston, MA: Pearson
Four Corners Vocabulary
Step By Step:
1. Student will read the assignment or the text
2. Student will then pick out words that are unfamiliar to them
3. Student will fill out a four corner vocabulary card with the information
a. First Box: Illustration
b. Second Box: Word Definition
c. Third Box: A sentence with the word included
d. Fourth Box: Write the word in both English and the students native language
Strengths: This strategy gives the student multiple different ways to learn the word.
Weaknesses: The student must study the vocabulary card that they make in order to learn the
word.
Example:
Illustration

Definition

Sentence

Vocabulary Word

Ferrell, Tammy. Early Reading Strategies: Picture Walks. 12 February 2012. 24 November 2014.
<http://www.123teachwithme.com/2012/02/early-reading-strategies-picture-walks.html>.

Picture Walks
Step By Step:
1. Using pictures and words of different objects, take the students on a walk and relate
the words and pictures to the student’s lives and how they use them.
2. Match the pictures and words with actual physical objects.
Strengths: This strategy is a great way for students to relate words or pictures to actual objects
and what they mean or how they’re used in real life.
Weakness: Students may not realize what some items are and they could be embarrassed about
admitting that they do not know if their fellow classmates know what they are.
Example:
Give students words and pictures of different objects such as: a baseball, baseball bat, specific
plants, specific animals, and different foods. Then find real life examples to show the students.

Bean, T.W., Readence, J.E., & Baldwin, R.S. (2011). Content area literacy-an integrated
approach. United States: Kendall/Hunt Publishing Company.
Bulletin Board Displays
Step by step: Incorporate different cultures in the classroom with decorative bulletin boards.
Students can interact with the bulletin board by bringing in newspaper articles, signs, and
pictures to post. The material on the boards should relate to the topics being covered at the time.
Strengths: This strategy will make students from other cultures feel comfortable with where they
are because their cultures are being represented in the classroom as well. This also gives students
an opportunity to learn about different cultures that they may not have ever been exposed to
before.

Weaknesses: It could be difficult for a teacher to represent every culture of the students in his or
her classroom on the board with information pertaining to the subject that is being covered at the
time. A misprint or misspelling by the teacher on information posted on the board could be seen
as offending to the students and they could get upset and cause a disturbance in the classroom.
Example:

Bean, T. W., Readence, J. E., & Baldwin, R. S. (2011). Content area literacy-An integrated
approach. United States: Kendall Hunt Publishing Company.
Knowledge Rating Scale
Step By Step:
1. Have students make a chart and divide the chart into 4 different sections; Key Term,
Know It, Kind of Know It, and No Idea.
2. Give the students the key terms or concepts for the lesson that is being taught.
3. Have the students fill out the chart based on their own knowledge.
Strengths: This strategy chart makes the student anxious to learn the lesson and pay attention
because if they kind of know it they will pay close attention so that they can figure it out. If they
don’t know it at all they will listen and learn so they can know something new.
Weaknesses: If students have no idea what any of the concepts or terms mean, then they may
become disinterested in the lesson and not pay attention.
Key Terms

Know It

Kind of Know It

No Idea