Yesterday afternoon tutors statewide participated in a virtual training facilitated by Cecilia A. Hicks, of Florida State College at Jacksonville, on effective vocabulary instruction for struggling adult readers. Below, Cecilia Hicks provides a synopsis of the training, and other helpful hints for tutors and teachers.
Vocabulary refers to knowledge of word meanings. We’ve discovered that there are two types of vocabularies used:
- oral – words we can use and understand in speaking and listening
- reading – the store of words we recognize and understand in print
The reader cannot understand the writer’s message unless they understand the meanings of most of the words. Who needs vocabulary instruction? Everyone at varying reading levels benefit from this vital component of the reading process. There are several research- and evidence-based strategies and activities tutors can use. Here is a list of some of these strategies.
- Using direct vocabulary instruction can include pre-teaching the words in instructional text. Teach the meaning of the word before the reading of the text.
- Be sure the learner uses the word through projects, employment, etc…
- Make the learning relevant to the learner.
- Teach how prefixes and suffixes can change the meaning and function of base words.
- Use context clues
- Teach the learner how to use a dictionary and thesaurus.
Several websites that I use often and modify as necessary include:
A final note: remember the learning style of your adult learner and try to incorporate something for everyone during your teaching or tutoring session.
This training was a collaborative learning event brought to you by the Florida Adult Literacy Resource Center, a program of the Florida Literacy Coalition. This training was made possible through the support of the Florida Department of Education, Division of Career and Adult Education.
Did you participate in yesterday’s training? Let us know your thoughts; leave your comments in the box below!