Understanding vocabulary is very important for learners of all ages.  At NPS, our students are being introduced to new and unfamiliar vocabulary words every day - especially in reading and math.  In order to help our students get a better grasp at this vocabulary, the resource teachers at every level and building (elementary, middle school, junior high, and high school) are using a vocabulary instruction process to better help students understand and apply this new vocabulary that they are learning.

The method of instruction for these vocabulary words is Marzano’s Six Step Process to Teaching Academic Vocabulary.   The process is as follows:

1. Provide a description, explanation, or example of the new term. (Include a non-linguistic representation of the term for ESL kids.)

2. Ask students to restate the description, explanation, or example in their own words. (Allow students whose primary existing knowledge base is still in their native language to write in it.)

3. Ask students to construct a picture, symbol, or graphic representing the word.

4. Engage students periodically in activities that help them add to their knowledge of the terms in their notebooks.

5. Periodically ask students to discuss the terms with one another. (Allow in native language when appropriate)

6. Involve students periodically in games that allow them to play with terms.

To read more about why vocabulary instruction is so important, please read the following article.

Effective Vocabulary Instruction - Keys to Literacy