Ok, so I’m out of sync with the days again. Sorry.
Spelling and vocabulary. Not an easy one to tackle at secondary level, especially given the pressures of the curriculum.
I love words, I guess that comes of being married to an ex-wordsmith, I love the sounds of words and the fun I can have gluing them together.
I’m guttered that kids don’t always share my love of words. I have tried a little this year to up my game in terms of words and wordsmithing in class.
Words on Wednesday
Words on Wednesday is a simple vocabulary exercise. I chose Wednesday (not just because of the nice alliteration) because I taught all day and that gave me more opportunities to try out new vocabulary. I taught 4 new words to each class, tailoring the choices to the content we were covering, but ensuring my usage examples were not too easy just to copy. The examples below were from my year 10 unit 1 non-fiction writing CA on reading.
The key for Words on Wednesday was that students would get a prize if they were able to come up to me at any point during the following week and get one of our Wednesday words into conversation without forcing it. This became a point of much hilarity with my year 10s, examples whilst I was on duty in the student dining hall included – “It is futile asking X to roll her skirt down miss”; “Miss, we need a better incentive to buy healthy food” and finally as the bell rings “Miss I am reticent to attend X lesson today.” I love those year 10s.
Another life saver this year has been this book. The LSAs I work with have been tireless in trying to find a practical and useful spelling book that we can use with students. Our spelling / handwriting intervention is usually done in a very small (20 min) tutor time slot at lunch. As such we have needed a resource that can make a difference under limited circumstances. Handling Spelling has proved its weight in gold. It is out of print but you can get secondhand copies from Amazon still.
Did you know that thesaurus literally means treasure box?
(Don’t believe me – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thesaurus)
I love this because words are treasure.
So this year I made a literal thesaurus in my classroom and have spent the year filling it with as much treasure as possible.
Go to my downloads page to get a pdf of the first batch of treasure I included.