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Focus on semantic categories, say the authors of an article in IDA’s “Perspectives” (2004).
Word categories might be
- semantic (for example, words related to transportation)
- relational (words that are similar, opposites, gradations of meaning, or words that share morphological units)
- or words connected by visualization
These are ways to extend word knowledge of struggling readers.
You are teaching the ways words “work.” Although you may be selecting these words outside of curriculum demands, always teach them in connection to one another and to larger categories of meanings. Never teach vocabulary words in isolation.
The authors suggest that play is important when learning new words.
Relational vocabulary instruction lends itself to word play, puzzles, games, puns, riddles and jokes. At one clinic, some kind of word play is included in every session.
source: a very old tear sheet from the Winter 2004 issue of IDA’s publication “Perspectives.” IDA, the International Dyslexia Association, is found at http://www.interdys.org. Become a member, and you recieve”Perspectives” as well as many benefits and access to resources. You will, in addition, be contributing to their very important mission.
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