Communication for the human race involves the use of appropriate words, vocabulary, when speaking and listening. We also write and read, using words, vocabulary, to get our ideas and thoughts across to others.
Today I want us to look at a child’s ability to enhance their communication skills through vocabulary building. Ask yourself, ‘How many new words does my child or the children in my class learn each day?’
You know that a child cannot do much academically if she cannot read or write, yet a lot of children are struggling to read and understand as I sit here writing this post. My heart goes out to them.This is the main reason why I have released this Free guide for all. It gives you the nuggets needed to take your child from birth to reading. It is a guide and not a comprehensive document. Do download your free copy by clicking here.
One of the first steps discussed is building vocabulary; this is so crucial in order for a child to develop the ability to speak and read with understanding. Research has shown over and over again, that children who have a high command of vocabulary by age 3-6 go on to do very well in college. Why is that? It is because they have a better understanding of texts they read. That is why at the end of the day text comprehension always takes precedence over the ability to read the text.
I need us to understand this because, parents and teachers alike are concerned about the children that cannot read. If we teach them to read and then they do not understand what they are reading, of what use will this new skill be for them?
Skills you teach must always come with understanding. This is what will make the skills useful to the learner.
So here is a list of things you could do to increase your child’s vocabulary:
- Teach real names of objects in the surrounding environment.
- Sing songs and learn rhymes
- Hold discussions with your child: do not keep them quiet all the time in the classroom. Let’s talk teachers, ‘let the children talk’. Mums, this ‘you talk when you are talked too’ business won’t work either. If the children do not practice the vocabulary they are learning then they will readily forget it after a while.
- For the older children make sure that words they are learning daily are in context of their present learning environment. Don’t just pull out words from the dictionary and if you do do this, use the words constantly and get them to do the same so that it will stick.
- Teach the children how to use the dictionary properly: they need to learn how to find the words,word guides for example are helpful,also they should know the different aspects of information the dictionary would give such as, word roots, parts of speech, phonic pronunciations, phonetic spelling, other similar words and the multiple meanings of words available.
- Start a Word List journal : the children can list the new words they come across in their personal journal, check for and write the dictionary meaning in the journal. They could practice once or twice a week, different new ways of using these new words in their daily routines, either in conversations or writings, the more they practice using these words the better they will become.
- Get the children to do some summary writings themselves after teaching a lesson. You can list the key words on the board and let them use them to write their notes. It really is not good practice to always provide notes for the children all the time.
Enable them to grow and develop right, let your child’s/children’s vocabulary muscles expand and build up. Once you start putting these tips into practice, I am sure you will be pleased with the resultant output of your child/children. As their vocabulary grows, so will their understanding of the world around them, the texts that they read and the thoughts and ideas they communicate through conversations and written words, will become a much more meaningful reality in their minds and the minds of the people they touch with their words.
Download your Free copy of the guide Now. Learn how to build your child’s vocabulary and teach your child how to read.