Saturday, January 25, 2014

Word Mapping for Vocabulary Instruction

Well, I really do want to get back to blogging more than once a week.  The last week I really got back in the routine of being full-time teacher and part-time doctoral student.  I had a cold this past week as well, so it took all my energy to work and do homework in the evenings. Overall though, I felt I had a very successful week. I was very productive.  I spent at least an hour each night on my own homework and studying.  I am trying to build consistent habits and avoid procrastination. I got my lessons plans done Thursday night and many of my copies done on Friday for next week.  I absolutely love  I played around for the first time with actually tagging the standards in my plans. I love it!  They have pre-made drop-down menus of standards for each state, the Common Core Standards, the Next Generation Science Standards, and even the NAGC programming standards.  I really want to get more familiar with the gifted standards since I am getting my PhD in Gifted Education.

I made myself a weekly checklist so I can keep my tasks for the week straight. I really want to be more proactive.  I find it much easier to concentrate on graduate school in the evenings the more prepared and organized I feel at work. You can get a copy here of the Word document if interested.

I have been doing guided reading the last few weeks since coming back from Christmas. We have been focusing on biographies, as a way to discuss what makes people successful.  I felt biographies were a great unit for a new year as you think about goals and reflect on what makes other people successful. Since I hadn't taught guided reading in a couple years, I am always looking for helpful strategies to really guide my students as readers.  In my reading for grad school this week, someone gave me an interesting article to read about vocabulary instruction.  The article mentioned a really interesting way to teach word-mapping.  I am excited to try it out this week.  You can see the example from the article below. I love how they used the vocabulary to make connections about the person they were studying.  I can see so many uses for this strategy.  Often just introducing the words before reading seems very flat to me with older students.  Word-mapping gives the vocabulary more context and utilizes higher-order thinking skills.
How do you teach vocabulary as part of your literacy instruction?  How do you teach vocabulary in a way that is relevant and helps them make connections?


  1. I like how you made the Word document for everything you need to do each week! Great idea. I have been using Wunderlist online, but I haven't added a checklist for each week. I am going to try this! Thank you!
    Rockin' and Lovin' Learnin'

  2. Wow! You are busy with all subjects and two grades.
    How many students do you have?
    What is your daily schedule look like?
    Thank you!


Pin It button on image hover