Saturday, November 7, 2009

Neat Vocabulary Strategy

Here's a link to the abstract for a great article from The Reading Teacher. Basically, it looks at using "morpheme triangles"--or rectangles--to show students the different parts of a word.

I tried it out this week as I was working on the word "retell". As you can see from the picture, we made a rectangle, and I put "re-" on one side and "tell" on the other. Students were seated in pairs on the carpet. One partner made a list of words that they knew with the word part "re-", while the other partner made a list of words with "tell". Then, we all shared our words. Students made their own copies of the chart in their vocabulary notebooks. (Just the back portion of their reading journal, marked off with a sticker.)

The activity generated some great discussions. Several students came up with "tele-" words, so we talked about the meaning of this root. We also looked at how the word "tell" changes form to become "told". Of course, we put the parts together and then talked about the whole word.

All of this took place in just 15 minutes, and was the perfect lead-in to our retelling activity that I wrote about previously. I love this strategy!

Winters, R. (2009, May). Interactive Frames for Vocabulary Growth and Word Consciousness. The Reading Teacher, 62(8), 685–690. doi: 10.1598/RT.62.8.6

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