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Vocabulary


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Last updated 10 January 2013 11:24 by NZTecAdmin

To read with understanding, readers need to know the meanings of the words (vocabulary) in the texts they read. They need a large and increasing bank of sight words (words they recognise automatically and do not need to decode). They need to understand the forms and functions of these written words, how they are used in sentences and how words relate to one another.

Most adults will be able to:
Activities
1.
  • have a reading vocabulary of everyday words, signs and symbols.

Readers can recognise and understand familiar words (for example, names, common words and high-interest words) in different contexts. They also recognise and understand essential signs and symbols relevant to their own situations.

Environmental print

Background information and teaching and learning ideas for using environmental print.

High-interest words

Background information and teaching and learning ideas for using high-interest words.

  • have a reading vocabulary of everyday words, signs and symbols.
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2.
  • have a reading vocabulary of everyday words that includes some compound words
  • have a knowledge of word families that enables them to increase their reading vocabulary
  • be aware that many words have more than one meaning and notice when a word is used with an unfamiliar meaning
  • have some understanding of the purposes of acronyms and abbreviations
  • know some everyday signs and symbols.

Readers have a reading vocabulary of everyday words (including some compound words, for example, lawnmower, middleman) that they can identify and understand. They can use their developing knowledge of words, topics and contexts to increase their reading vocabulary. Readers seek to identify the new meaning of a familiar word when it is used in an unfamiliar way. Areas of study can include:

  • learning word families, because knowing a root word and understanding how it can be changed opens up the meanings of many more words (for example, love gives access to loves, loved, lovely, unloved, lovable)
  • connecting new words with background knowledge, because when readers connect new words with a concept or topic they already know about, they are more likely to understand and retain the new words (for example, the vocabulary associated with tangi can include passed away, grief and wharenui)
  • finding synonyms, because knowing words that have the same or very similar meanings increases readers’ vocabulary knowledge (for example, warm and tepid, cold and chilly, or wet, damp, moist and soggy).

Clines

Learners find out about shades of meaning between similar words by arranging words in a continuum.

Clustering

Learners organise sets of key words into specific groups in order to think about and discuss the meanings of words and the relationships between words.

Word and definition barrier activity

Learners practise matching words with definitions by using key words, recalling the definitions and checking their understanding.

Word maps

Learners brainstorm words that relate to a single focus word in order to extend vocabulary.

Word building (word families)

Learners decode unfamiliar words by identifying root words and exploring patterns.

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3.
  • have a reading vocabulary of everyday words and some less common words, acronyms and abbreviations
  • understand that some words and phrases can have figurative as well as literal meanings
  • have strategies for finding the meanings of unknown words, including a knowledge of how to find words in a dictionary and interpret definitions.

Readers have acquired a reading vocabulary of everyday and some less common words they recognise and understand. They use their own knowledge of the world and the reading context to make inferences as they work out the meanings of new words and interpret definitions in a dictionary to find the best meaning. Areas of study can include:

  • inferring the meanings of new words from knowledge about the context and about how words work in relation to other words
  • distinguishing figurative and literal meanings, for example, in words and expressions such as “With your food basket and my food basket …” or “I heard through the kumara vine that you were going on holiday” or “Give me a hand”
  • using dictionaries and discussing definitions
  • learning the meanings of acronyms and abbreviations that are used in their reading.

Clines

Learners find out about shades of meaning between similar words by arranging words in a continuum.

Concept circles

Learners explain concepts (including the meanings of words), see connections between concepts and activate their background knowledge.

Pair definitions

Learners recall, then write, a definition of a word and find out how well the definition describes the intended word to another learner.

Predicting and defining new words

Learners predict and define key words they think will be in a text they have previewed.

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4.
  • have a reading vocabulary that includes some general academic words and some specialised words
  • understand how word families can be generated (based on roots, prefixes and suffixes) and use this understanding to extend their vocabulary.

Readers have acquired a reading vocabulary of some general academic words and some specialised words they recognise and understand. They are able
to use their knowledge of word formation based on roots, prefixes and suffixes to extend their own reading vocabulary. Areas of study can include:

  • using known parts of words, such as specific prefixes, roots and suffixes, to increase vocabulary (for example, to read inadequately by knowing the meanings of in-, adequate and -ly)
  • exploring word derivations. (Note that knowing such Latin and Greek morphemes as inter, poly, geo, bio, contra, multi, graphic and logic, which form parts of English words, will help readers to understand new words that use different combinations of these parts.)
 
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6.
  • have a large reading vocabulary that includes general academic words and specialised words and terms.

Readers have acquired a large reading vocabulary that relates to their own knowledge of the world, and that includes general academic words and specialised words and terms. Readers use what they know about words and about the world to increase their vocabulary in a wide range of contexts.

 
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