Vocabulary Bookmarks

An excellent way to help students think about new words they encounter as they read is to create a double sided bookmark where students collect new words as they read. At the top of the bookmark, put “A word that the class should know is:” and leave some space for students to write their new word. Near the middle of the bookmark put the phrase stem, “I think this word means” and the page number where the word was found. Again, leave room for students to write a few words describing what they think the word means in the context provided in their text. Later, students are given time to present their new words in either small and/or large group settings to discuss each word and their probable meanings. Any time there is disagreement over the probable meaning of the word in the context of the text, students should look the word up in the dictionary to check dictionary definitions. The teacher is the final arbitrator in the case of any continued questions regarding the meaning of any of the words being discussed. Students enjoy searching for new words that might be appropriate for their bookmarks and the discussions help deepen word interest and knowledge.

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