5 Ways to Improve Vocabulary: Use Spelling Lists
5 Ways to Improve Vocabulary
One straightforward way to tackle spelling and vocabulary all at once is to practice both at the same time. Home school parents are busier than ever and want online learning to be meaningful and to the point. By studying both spelling and vocabulary at the same time, students can become better writers, prepare for college entrance exams and also improve speaking abilities that may help them become better employees or business owners in the future.
The best way to accomplish the goal of learning spelling and vocabulary at the same time is to create spelling lists with vocabulary words and then using the word’s definition for the sentence. An example of this is below.
Spelling Word: inventive
Sentence: The word inventive means that someone has the ability to create something new and original.
That person’s artwork is inventive and fresh.
How to Make a Vocabulary List
An excellent place to start research for making vocabulary lists is, of course, the Internet. Consider your student’s grade level and also their abilities and goals. A gifted child may be ready to take on extra challenges while some students may find that solidifying current grade level vocabulary is the best way for them to strengthen their word knowledge. My advice is to focus on growth and potential for all students. Every student learns at a different pace, but all students can grow and should be challenged to do so. If your student happens to be behind based on standard criteria, challenge them by adding a few words that they’ve never heard before. As their confidence grows, so will their vocabulary!
How to Study Vocabulary
One tried-and-true way to memorize vocabulary is flashcards. Get index cards and write the word on one side and the definition and a practice sentence on the other side. As students begin to memorize the new vocabulary words, they can take them out of the deck and focus more on the ones they need to learn. I’ve found that for vocabulary or spelling tests, that studying the night before a bit extra and then again in the morning as a quick refresher can help solidify word memory.
The Best Way to Learn New Vocabulary Forever
The very best way to learn vocabulary for the long term is to use it and watch and listen to new vocabulary being used. When you are learning a new language, being immersed is the best way to make those new words your lifelong companions. It is the same when you are learning more English. Here are some quick ideas to take learning to the next level.
- Seek out videos, movies, or TV shows that use the new vocabulary words.
- Seek out books that use new vocabulary words.
- Create a skit using new vocabulary, which works very well for ESL.
- Write short stories using new vocabulary words.
- Make your mini-movies with your phone using the new vocabulary words.
The art of learning new vocabulary takes practice and repetition, but students also have to use their new words to commit vocabulary to long term memory. The benefits of a more extensive vocabulary are plentiful and will pay the student back many times over. Take the time and effort to make your spelling lists do double duty and serve as your vocabulary lists as well, and you will find that your student is improving in both spelling and vocabulary in no time.
Create Spelling Lists with Home Spelling Words
We have spelling words for kindergarten through 9th grade, and you can make custom spelling lists that double as vocabulary lists easily at Home Spelling Words.
About the Author
Kim A. is a fan of spelling, education, and all things tech. She enjoys writing and reading fun articles, gardening and spending time with her family.