10 Do’s and Don’ts for Effective Vocabulary Instruction

10 dosWe know that there is a strong relationship between vocabulary and reading comprehension. Systematic vocabulary instruction must be an integral component of a K-12 comprehensive instructional framework

While there is no one correct way to teach vocabulary, common characteristics of effective vocabulary instruction have been documented in many professional journals and books. And yet, recent NAEP results for vocabulary reveal no significant change in vocabulary scores for 4th- and 8th-grade students from 2009 to 2011. In short, we still have a long way to go to improve vocabulary instruction and student word learning.

Effective vocabulary instruction across grade levels and content areas is key. Whether you implement Marzano’s 6-step vocabulary process or integrate digital tools into your instructional toolkit, the “10 Do’s and Don’ts” highlighted in this infographic can help you drill down to the basics and strengthen your instruction. It can also set the stage for discussions to improve vocabulary instruction and word learning across classrooms in your setting.

{12 Days of Literacy} Tool 11: Infographic: 10 Do’s and Don’ts for Effective Vocabulary Instruction

You can copy this infographic or download a PDF by clicking on the tag below the infographic.

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10 Do's and Don'ts for Effective Vocabulary Instruction - Dr. Kimberly Tyson @tysonkimberly


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Kimberly has been a teacher, administrator, and literacy consultant who worked in districts across the country to improve student literacy achievement. She currently serves as an Educational Specialist with Solution Tree and project manager for large-scale PLC implementations. Her new book, Blended Vocabulary: Harnessing the Power of Digital Tools and Effective Instruction, was recently released in February, 2017.