Words, Words, Words:
The Importance of Academic Vocabulary
How to use my shiny, new knowledge in my content areas
When using "Formal" and "Consultative" language, I might also be teaching about root words, and affixes. If I can show students how to break down words, I can better help them understand how to decipher words on their own. If in a math lesson there is a question that says "Andrew used a pedometer to count his steps two days in a row. On the first day his pedometer read 11,458 steps. On the second day his pedometer read 10,763 steps. How many steps did Andrew take total?" My students might not know what a pedometer is, and therefore miss an important part of the question. I can teach them that "ped" in pedometer is foot, they can draw the assumption that a pedometer counts how many times you move your foot, or how many feet you walk (Harmon & Wood, 2008). This is also a chance to reinforce a root word we would have already talked about. Since "academic language must be introduced and then reinforced," I could introduce "ped" in a language arts unit earlier, and reinforce it in math (Robertson, 2015).