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Learning Explosion Publications

Learning for all ages made easy through a study of Greek & Latin root words

Vocabulary Research Findings & Applications

A) Vocabulary is best taught by direct instruction
Vocabulary Explosion is a daily program for 10 minutes of planned instruction.
B) Students need multiple exposures to new terms (at least 4 occassions).
Day 1, 2, 3, and 4 of the weekly plan allows 4 different exposures to the new terms. Day 5 is for Review & Assessment.
C) Students learn words in clusters rather than in isolation.
The Latin/Greek root with its 6-10 derivatives provide the list for the week. This family/cluster with their interrelated connections promote retention of word meanings.
D) Vocabulary can be classified into 3 tiers:
TIER 1 is conversational. Conversational vocabulary is acquired through verbal interaction.
TIER 2 is academic vocabulary needed for success in the school environment.
TIER 3 is robust vocabulary. This level brings vocabulary to life; makes it vibrant.
Vocabulary Explosion Word Lists:
Derivatives from the chosen root include both academic and robust vocabulary. This occurs weekly. An example from Grade 3 is the Latin root actus meaning "do" or "drive". The list includes academic terms: react; action; actor. It also includes robust terms: proactive and transaction.
TIER 1 - Conversational vocabulary is not learned by direct instruction.
TIER 2 - Academic vocabulary requires direct instruction and is directly related to academic acheivement.
TIER 3 - Robust vocabulary
E) Vocabulary is best taught in 6 steps summarized as follows:
1) Explain - rich, varied information about each word.
2) Restate - active role by students in word learning process
3) Show picture/graphic
4) Discuss
5) Refine/reflect
6) Apply - games
Vocabulary Explosion lends opportunities each week for teachers to incorporate best practices.
1) Day 1 offers opportunity for teacher/students to interact, sharing connections of new terms with meanings for day 1, 2, and 3.
2) The Frayer model can be used to restate the meanings of the new terms in student's own words.
3) Again the Frayer model provides place for drawing or graphic representation of new graphic organizers can be used to demonstration connections between words.
4) Peer pairs and sharing groups either with the daily projects on Activity Day 4 allow for conversational sharing of the words.
5) Journals are recommended to allow students to reflect or improve their understandings of the word meanings.
6) Suggested games/activities are opportunities to play with daily activities or Day 4 activities.
F) Vocabulary is best taught with attention to meanings of word parts (Morphology).
Vocabulary Explosion is based on Latin/Greek roots/suffixes/prefixes.
Beck, Isabel
     Bringing Words to Life, Second Edition: Robust Vocabulary Instruction, 2013

Frayer, Dorothy
     The Frayer Model (2001) Univ/Wisconsin - https://wvde.state.nw.us>strategybank
Marzano, Robert J
     www.marzanoresearch.com - Building Background Knowledge for Academic Acheivement: Research on What Works in Schools, 2004